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Weddington’s Stephanie Watts invited to USA basketball trials

By Langston Wertz Jr.
lwertz@charlotteobserver.com
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Stephanie Watts has committed to play college basketball at UNC Chapel Hill. Watts averaged 22 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, five steals and two blocks per game last season for Weddington.

Weddington High’s Stephanie Watts, the Observer’s All-Region player of the year, has been invited to the USA Basketball U18 Trials. The event will be held in Colorado Springs May 24-26.

Watts, a 5-foot-10 junior guard who has committed to North Carolina, will have a chance to earn a spot on the U.S. national team that will try to win a FIBA Americas championship in August. The coach of the U.S. team is South Carolina’s Dawn Staley.

Watts also made a jump to No. 26 in ESPN’s national rankings for the class of 2015, moving up from No. 39. She is now the top-rated player from the Carolinas. Durham Riverside’s 6-foot-3 forward Mone’ Jones is No. 33. No other Carolinas player is ranked among the top 60.

Basketball

• United Faith senior forward Nehemiah Mabson, a 6-foot-6 Observer All-Mecklenburg pick, has signed with Campbell. Mabson was an all-state selection this season....Hough 6-foot-9 senior center Tucker Thompson signed with Western Carolina.

• Hickory Grove girls star Jayla Joyner has committed to the Coast Guard Academy. She was a two-time all-conference pick in the Metrolina Athletic Conference....Concord First Assembly’s Kaitlyn Holm signed with Cedarville (Ohio) University.

• Cannon School girls coach Jack Warren has resigned. He has coached the team since 2009. He led Cannon to the N.C. Independent playoffs in 2011 and 2014.

• Providence Day’s Jatarie White, the All-Observer co-girls player of the year and reigning N.C. Ms. Basketball, made the MaxPreps All-American team. White, a two-time N.C. Gatorade player of the year, made fifth team. A senior headed to South Carolina, she shared the All-Observer award with Myers Park junior Rydeiah Rogers.

Myers Park junior Aliyah Mazyck was an honorable mention on the All-America team.

Girls’ Soccer

• Myers Park stopped Providence 5-1 Wednesday. Providence is ranked No. 4 in the National Soccer Coaches Association poll. Hough is ranked No. 1. Hough is No. 1 in the Observer’s Sweet 16, followed by Providence and Myers Park.

Blair Anderes scored all five goals for Myers Park (13-1). Jen Simons scored for the Panthers (14-1-1).

• Watauga girls soccer coach Brittany Bolick, in her fourth season, is resigning to take an assistant job at Appalachian State. Bolick was a three-time all-conference pick and a conference player of the year while in high school at Watauga. She played at Charleston Southern.

• Cannon senior forward Anna Estep scored 29 goals to go with eight assists in her first 13 games. That includes 11 goals and three assists in a recent three-game stretch.

Track

Some of the area’s top runners will participate in the annual Dick Williams Relays at East Mecklenburg Friday. The meet begins at 4 p.m.

Mecklenburg County conference championships are next week. The MECKA is at A.L. Brown Tuesday and Wednesday. The Southwestern 4A is at Rocky River Wednesday and Thursday, and the SoMeck is at South Mecklenburg Wednesday and Thursday.

• Providence Day history teacher and track coach John Compton ran a personal best time of 2 hours, 36.04 minutes at this week’s Boston Marathon. He was the top finisher from Charlotte and sixth best among all N.C. entrants. He finished 210th out of more than 36,000 who began he race. Compton graduated from Providence Day in 2004.

Baseball

Ardrey Kell jumped 16 spots to No. 20 in MaxPreps’ national rankings this week. Rival Providence is No. 37.

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

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