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Cuthbertson’s Mitchell heads for Oak Hill

By Langston Wertz Jr.

Cuthbertson junior basketball player Shelton Mitchell is leaving for Oak Hill (Va.) next season. Mitchell was picked as the Observer’s All-Region player of the year this week.

He made the announcement this week on Twitter, saying he loved his former school and his choice had nothing to do with Cuthbertson or its coaches.

He just felt going to Oak Hill and playing for legendary coach Steve Smith was going to be the best thing for him. At Oak Hill, he’ll play with some of the best players in the country every day in practice and play one of the nation’s toughest schedules alongside them.

Going to Oak Hill has been a boon to the careers of many area stars. Kinston’s Jerry Stackhouse once joined Charlotte’s Jeff McInnis at the tiny school in Mouth of Wilson, Va. Both played in the McDonald’s All-America game and ended up at North Carolina and, later, in the NBA. More recently, current N.C. State guard Tyler Lewis left Forsyth Country Day for a season with Smith at Oak Hill. Lewis, another McDonald’s All-American, had already made his college decision before he enrolled.

He enrolled to get better.

It’s got to be a tough call, to move away from home and live away from your parents and friends during your senior season. You leave being the Big Man On Campus and in the newspaper every Wednesday and Saturday.

You gain something you can’t get at home, though – going against major college-level (or at least future major college-level) competition every day and playing the best of the best when the season starts.

Many guys do fine staying home – Antawn Jamison, Chris Paul and Stephen Curry come to mind – but if going to Oak Hill is what Shelton Mitchell feels will help him reach his goals, well, I’m all for it.

•  Providence Day’s girls’ relay team – Arielle Massillon, Emma Brown, Sarah Whelan and Jonah Edwards – finished third in the prep school division at the prestigious Penn Relays on Thursday. The team ran a time of 4 minutes, 3.58 seconds and broke the old school record of 4:09.50, set in 2011.

“We went to the Penn Relays just for the team to experience track and field on a bigger stage,” Chargers coach Carol Lawrence said.

“I have a lot of confidence in my girls and want them to have the same amount of confidence in themselves. I am so pleased with their accomplishments.”

•  Forestview’s golf team shot a four-player score of 270 March 18 at Crowders Mountain Golf Club. Forestview won a three-team match with South Point and Kings Mountain.

Forestview’s score is the lowest reported 18-hole team score outside of a state championship.

Forestview seniors Will Long and Alex Taylor each shot 66. Freshman Drew Jurs shot 67 and junior Will Blalock shot 1-under-par 71. The course was set up over 6,035 yards.

The old state record was 277 from Cary Green Hope.

•  Olympic’s baseball team clinched the ME-GA 7 championship Tuesday with a 9-2 win against West Meck.

The Trojans polished off a sterling week with a 4-1 win against Southwestern 4A leading South Mecklenburg. Pitcher Logan Redmond had seven strikeouts and allowed five hits in the win over the Sabres. Olympic is 16-7.

•  Providence Day senior lacrosse player Steve Onak scored his 100th career goal in Friday’s 15-8 win against rival Charlotte Latin. Latin came into the game ranked No. 1 in the N.C. Laxpower state poll. Providence Day, which handed Latin its first loss against a N.C. team, was No. 2.

Onak entered the match with 97 goals and scored five times. Onak has committed to Division I Siena (NY) College.

“What is most impressive about Steve reaching 100 goals,” Chargers coach Bobby Thompson said, “is that he really only accomplished the feat with two full seasons. He lost the majority of his sophomore year because of a broken foot.”

•  Covenant Day’s tennis team beat Charlotte Latin 7-2 Friday to finish the regular-season 16-0.

•  Newton-Conover’s soccer team beat South Iredell 1-0 last week, snapping a four-year, 53-game conference win streak.

Newton-Conover senior Kara Schell had the game-winning goal off an assist from Gretchen Crier. Taylor Petty got the shutout against the state’s top ranked Class 2A team.

•  Providence Day girls’ basketball player Ashton Carrick has committed to Division III Centre (Ky.) College. Carrick, a 5-foot-3 point guard, averaged 2.3 assists this year for the state champion Chargers.

•  Marvin Ridge’s baseball team is Southern Carolina conference champs for the sixth year in a row.

Marvin Ridge clinched the title with a 4-2 win against reigning NCHSAA 3A champion Weddington,its 17th straight triumph under coach Mark Mennitt.

Wertz: 704-612-9716; twitter: @langstonwertzjr
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