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High School Notebook

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Girls' basketball star Gillespie picks Clemson

By Cliff Mehrtens
cmehrtens@charlotteobserver.com

Statesville basketball guard Keyrra Gillespie, All-Observer and all-state as a junior last season, committed to Clemson.

Gillespie, 5-foot-6, also considered Florida, Florida State and Georgia Tech among dozens of major college offers she received. Last season, she averaged 15.2 points, 8.2 assists, 6.3 rebounds and 4.9 steals. Gillespie helped Statesville (28-3) reach the N.C. 3A quarterfinals, the first time the Greyhounds had advanced to the regionals in 11 years.

She is the state's top-ranked point guard, and 15th nationally, according to scouts.com.

BASEBALL: Charlotte Catholic's Danny Vliet, a left-handed pitcher, committed to UNC Asheville. Vliet, a rising senior, was 6-3 last season, with 49 strikeouts in 51 innings.


North Mecklenburg outfielder Mike Gragilla (6-5, 210) committed to High Point. As a junior last season, he hit .373 with four home runs and 15 RBIs.

FOOTBALL: West Iredell receiver Quan Rucker, who is moving to quarterback this season, committed to Wake Forest. Rucker (6-0, 191) caught 52 passes for 642 yards and five touchdowns as a junior last season.

He was recruited as a receiver. He also had offers from Clemson, Illinois, N.C. State and Maryland.


Rock Hill set a scoring record with a 34-0 victory against Weddington in the Herald Jamboree last weekend.

The Bearcats had 315 yards in the two-quarter game, and limited Weddington to minus-8 yards and two first downs.

SOCCER: Coaches were named for next summer's N.C. Coaches Association East-West All-Star game in Greensboro – Asheville Reynolds' Patrick Gladys (West boys), Leesville Road's Chip Stone (East boys), Northeast Guilford's James Pielow (West girls) and Lumberton's Kenny Simmons (East girls).

GIRLS' GOLF: Lake Norman's Hayley Hammond played on the Carolinas team that won the Seventh Mid-Atlantic Girls' Challenge in Danville, Va. Hammond won a four-ball match the first day of the tournament, and was edged in a singles loss the second day. The event is part of the Carolinas Golf Association competition.

AWARDS: South Iredell (Class 2A) and Concord (3A) were among four winners of the N.C. High School Athletic Association's Student Services School of the Year awards.

The award recognizes top involvement to the NCHSAA Student Services program, which includes the Student-Athlete Summer Institutes (SASI), coach-captain retreats, coaches' education programs, DREAM Team (Daring to Role Model Excellence as Athletic Mentors) and Peer-Athlete Team Helpers (PATH).

Perquimans (1A) and Hope Mills South View (4A) were the other winners. Each school received a plaque and $400.

BASKETBALL:Anthony Gill, a 6-foot-7 sophomore forward, has enrolled at Charlotte Christian, Knights athletics officials said.

He played at Charlotte Country Day last season, but withdrew from the school last week.

At Charlotte Christian, he will team with 6-foot-7 senior Willis Hall to form a talented frontcourt for the Knights.


West Charlotte Senior forward Nikki Burton, a 2008 All-Observer pick, has committed to Louisville.

Burton, a 5-foot-11 wing player, chose Louisville over Virginia Tech, Boston College, Miami, George Washington and Kentucky, coach ReggieMobley said. Burton also canceled a visit to Oklahoma.

Langston Wertz Jr.

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