My column this week will be on all the kids that played high school basketball in Chatham County this season. The Northwood, Chatham Charter and Chatham Central boys and girls teams all made the …
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My column this week will be on all the kids that played high school basketball in Chatham County this season. The Northwood, Chatham Charter and Chatham Central boys and girls teams all made the state tournament, as did the Jordan-Matthews boys and the Woods Charter girls. Eight out of 10 teams achieved the post-season, and the Woods Charter boys and Jordan-Matthews girls were both competitive as well.
So I’d like to be the first to thank all the young men and women for a job well done. It was one of the most exciting seasons I can remember on the hard court.
The Chatham Charter and Northwood boys teams, in particular, were something to watch as both teams were within minutes of advancing to a 1A and 3A State Championship contest respectively.
In Siler City, everyone knew Chatham Charter would be good, but 31-2 with a last minute loss to powerful Winston Salem Prep in the West Regional Final - come on, no one dreamed of that.
Northwood, well the Chargers closed at 27-3 and no one was surprised, they were loaded coming in and it took a whale of a team in unbeaten and 30-0 Westover to knock the locals off in the 3A East Regional Final.
So what was the common theme between those two schools which are almost different in every single way, especially enrollment? Experienced seniors who bought into the team concept.
Jordan Hamilton, Ryan White, Connor Murphy, Cole Milholen, all seniors for Chatham Charter who carried the team to unchartered territory in just its sixth season as a program. Countless hours of work since middle school and during the summer, I’ve seen it with my own eyes as these kids grew up under coach Jason Messier and his staff.
Deuce Powell, Aaron Ross, Alex Snively, Jack Thompson, Jalen Mcafee-Marion, Justin Brower were the main seniors for Northwood, and have logged a lot of minutes and hours in game time and in practice for the green and gold in the last four seasons. Again, I’ve literally seen these young men grow and improve for four seasons now and to see their success was awesome. Coach Matt Brown and his staff deserve a lot of credit as well for implementing a system that let these guys do what they did best: get up and down the court.
There are a lot of memories that all these teams provided for fans young and old alike. And these players will likely never know the impact that they had on so many. Whether it was Hamilton banging his way through the opposing defenses, Powell hitting the miracle trey versus Cape Fear, Jordan-Matthews and those seniors winning the PAC 7 Tournament to steal a playoff bid, Michael Moore slamming the two-handed jam at North Rowan off a pass from Lucas Skertich to seal the win, Taylor and Cameron Hughes suiting up on an emotional Senior Night in Bear Creek, the Chatham Charter girls shattering a school-record for wins, Woods Charter and Corrin Harrington making the state playoffs a year after not fielding a team, or the Northwood girl’s overcoming so many injuries and setbacks to advance into the third round, it was you, the student-athletes of Chatham County on the basketball court that provided us area fans with a special season comprised of so many special moments.
And again, it’s all about you and your accomplishments as teams and as individuals, and that’s how it always should be. So from all of us, thank you and well done!