↑Greensboro-area teams: High Point Wesleyan to face Greensboro Day in boys NCISAA 3A final Saturday, after those teams knocked off Providence Day and Cannon School. Wesleyan Christian’s girls are also in Saturday’s final and will face 7-time state champ Providence Day.
↓Charlotte-area teams: Tough day for area schools with Providence Day, Cannon School, Carmel Christian’s girls and Gaston Day all falling in semifinal games to non-area schools.
↑Private school coaching: Nine of the 12 boys semifinal coaches in the NCISAA 1A, 2A and 3A playoffs have won state championships. Six have won multiple titles.
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↑Davidson Day girls: Returned to the state finals for the second straight season with an emphatic 66-37 win over rival Concord First Assembly. The Patriots will face Carolina Day at 6 p.m. Saturday at Charlotte Latin. Carolina Day beat Davidson Day 43-34 in last year’s final. Friday, Davidson Day got 28 points, 16 rebounds from Parker Tompkins and 21 points, 12 rebounds, five steals and three assists from Anika Riley.
↑Carmel Christian coach Byron Dinkins: After leading Northside Christian to six straight state championship appearances -- and three titles -- Dinkins changed addresses, and is doing the same thing in southeast Charlotte. Dinkins will coach Carmel in his seventh straight appearance in the state finals Saturday.
Friday’s #BIG5 Performers
Janelle Bailey, Providence Day: 23 points, 18 rebounds for the McDonald’s All-American in a 51-22 win over Rabun Gap.
David Caraher, Jaylen Hoard, High Point Wesleyan: Caraher, the state’s No. 16-ranked senior headed to Houston Baptist, had 29 points and 10 rebounds in an 75-69 win over Providence Day. Hoard had 20 points and seven rebounds.
Devon Dotson, Trey Wertz, Providence Day: Dotson had a game-high 32 points, four rebounds and three assists against Wesleyan. Wertz scored 18 of his 19 points in the second half after suffering a pretty tough left ankle injury in the first half. He added a team-high five rebounds, plus three assists and had a pronounced limp after the game.
Donovan Gregory, Myles Pierre, Carmel Christian: In an 79-76 win over Concord First Assembly Friday, Gregory had 25 points, 13 rebounds and seven steals. Pierre had 17 points, 11 rebounds and six steals.
Quan McCluney, Nate Hinton, Gaston Day: McCluney had 25 points, eight rebounds, four assists in a 2A semifinal loss to Fayetteville’s Village Christian. Hinton had 28 points, four rebounds and two assists.
Friday’s Boys Roundup
Carmel Christian 79, Concord First Assembly 76: Coach Byron Dinkins led his Cougars to the state championship in his first season there, winning a close semifinal behind 25 points from sophomore Donovan Gregory, 17 from sophomore Myles Pierre, 14 from sophomore Marten Maide and 13 from senior Shawn Morrison. Carmel will face Village Christian in Saturday’s 8 p.m. state final. Two of the Cougars, Gregory and Maide, were part of Dinkins’ Northside Christian team that lost to Village Christian 59-52 in the 2016 state 2A final. Stephen Edoka led CFA with 23 points.
Fayetteville Village Christian 82, Gaston Day 80: Village Christian, the reigning state champion, had to play its semifinal on Gaston Day’s homecourt, but withstood the emotion of a big crowd and a strong performance from McCluney and Hinton to advance to Saturday’s state championship game against Carmel Christian. DaKari Johnson had 26 for Village and Jordan Ratliffe had 24. Gaston Day missed a flurry of free throws late, including two that could’ve tied the game with 4.9 seconds left -- and a short put-back attempt after the second free throw missed.
Greensboro Day 68, Cannon 49: Nationally ranked Greensboro Day (32-3) jumped out to a 22-9 first quarter lead in its semifinal and wouldn’t let up. Solomon Smith and Jordan Perkins had 13 points for the Bengals, ranked No. 11 nationally by MaxPreps and No. 23 by USA Today. Pearce Landry added 12 and John Newman had 11. Cannon got 19 from Jairus Hamilton but no other Cougar scored more than nine. Greensboro Day will face rival High Point Wesleyan (28-4) for the state championship Saturday at noon at Charlotte Latin. If the Bengals win, they could also win a trip to New York for the DICKS’ National Championship that Providence Day played in last year. Also, Greensboro Day beat Wesleyan twice this season -- by a combined seven points.
High Point Wesleyan 75, Providence Day 69: With coaches from Creighton, Florida, Florida State, Ohio State, Tennessee, Virginia and Wake Forest in the stands, Providence Day (23-11) trailed by four at halftime, but rallied behind eight straight points from Wertz to gain an advantage in the third quarter. After that, the Chargers -- who got 11 points and five rebounds from junior Isaac Suffren -- appeared to tire under the relentless assault from Wesleyan’s bigger front line. Carraher and Hoard scored at will inside, and the Chargers’ shots didn’t fall late. Wesleyan advanced to Saturday’s noon championship game at Charlotte Latin School and will go for its first state title since winning back-to-back championships in 2013 and 2014.
Friday’s Girls Roundup
Carolina Day 56, Carmel Christian 19: Carolina Day (26-1) will try to win its seventh straight N.C. Independent Schools 2A state championship Saturday. Carolina Day jumped out to a 19-4 first quarter lead and won easily. Maleeah Langstaff had 14 points and Kasey Kidwell had 13 to lead Carolina Day. Chloe Williams had seven for Carmel Christian, which reached the semifinals in coach Ashley McGuirt’s first season.
Providence Day 51, Rabun Gap 22: Providence Day (24-4) led Rabun Gap 14-11 after the first quarter and held Rabun Gap to 11 points for the rest of the game. The Chargers will try to win their eighth straight state championship Saturday at 10 a.m. at Charlotte Latin School, facing High Point Wesleyan (24-6). Providence Day -- which has won 105 straight conference games -- has won 12 of the past 13 state championships and 16 overall. The school has produced two McDonald’s All-Americans -- Jatarie White (2014) and Janelle Bailey (2017) -- in the past three seasons, and Charger girls have won four of the past five Gatorade N.C. player of the year awards (Tiffany Mitchell 2012, White 2013-14, and Erin Whalen 2016). Bailey is the front runner to win it this season.
Friday’s NCISAA Scores
3A Boys Semifinals: Greensboro Day 68, Cannon School 49; High Point Wesleyan 75, Providence Day 69
Saturday’s final at Charlotte Latin: Greensboro Day (32-3) vs. High Point Wesleyan (28-4), noon
2A Boys Semifinals: Village Christian 82, Gaston Day 80; Carmel Christian 79, Concord First Assembly 76
Saturday’s final at Charlotte Latin: Village Christian (28-5) vs. Carmel Christian (21-5), 8 p.m.
1A Boys Semifinals: Burlington School 72, Northwood Temple 67; Trinity Christian 83, Greenfield School 75
Saturday’s final at Charlotte Latin: Burlington School (30-0) vs. Trinity Christian (21-9), 4 p.m.
3A Girls Semifinals: Providence Day 51, Rabun Gap 22; Wesleyan Christian 53, Greensboro Day 26
Saturday’s final at Charlotte Latin: Providence Day (24-4) vs. Wesleyan Academy (24-6), 10 a.m.
2A Girls Semifinals: Carolina Day 56, Carmel Christian 19; Davidson Day 66, Concord First Assembly 37
Saturday’s final at Charlotte Latin: Carolina Day (26-1) vs. Davidson Day (24-3), 6 p.m.
1A Girls Semifinals: Neuse Christian 75, Ridgecroft School 37; Trinity Chrisitian 69, Northwood Temple 64
Saturday’s final at Charlotte Latin: Neuse Christian (23-0) vs. Trinity Christian (19-4), 2 p.m.