Sports Shorts for March 2

Area girls nab private-school all-state basketball honors

Charlotte Country Day’s Beth Erb (second from left) scored her 1,000th career point on Feb. 14. She is pictured with (from left) her father, John; brother, Bryan; and mother, Monica. (Courtesy of Mary Beth Luxton)

While Providence Day won its third consecutive girls state basketball championship last weekend and had three players named to the all-state squad, a number of other south Charlotte standouts also garnered attention.

Charlotte Christian’s Gigi Bailey and Charlotte Country Day’s Beth Erb each were named to the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 3A All-State team. Bailey and Erb joined Providence Day’s Tiffany Mitchell, Olivia Parker and Jatarie White on the all-state roster.

The 6-foot-3 Bailey is regarded as one of the state’s top 11th-grade players, with several college programs pursuing a commitment from her.

Erb is a high-scoring junior guard who scored her 1,000th career point in a Feb. 14 victory over Concord Cannon. That night, Erb scored 27 points and surpassed the Bucs’ single-season scoring record of 456 points held by Sara Nichols, who established the mark during the 1991-92 season.

For the season, Erb scored 479 points and averaged 20.8 points per game while leading the Bucs to a state playoff appearance.

Four Chargers make girls all-conference team

State champion Providence Day had four players named to the Charlotte Independent Schools Athletic Association’s all-conference team.

Junior guard Jada Brayboy joined Charger teammates Tiffany Mitchell, Olivia Parker and Jatarie White in earning all-CISAA honors.

Charlotte Christian was paced by junior center Gigi Bailey and senior guard Maryah Mazyck, while Charlotte Latin’s Garland Austin and Charlotte Country Day’s Beth Erb rounded out the squad.

Knights, Hawks lead all-CISAA boys squad

Charlotte Christian and Charlotte Latin led the area by having three players each named to the Charlotte Independent Schools Athletic Association’s boys all-conference squad.

Charlotte Christian’s honorees included senior center Ryan Potocnik, junior swingman Patrick Rooks and sophomore shooting guard Matthew Fisher-Davis. Rooks has committed to Clemson University.

Charlotte Latin’s all-conference selections were sophomore swingman Rusty Riegel, junior guard Adam Herrmann and senior forward Matt Tome.

Providence Day had two players who made all-CISAA: sophomore guard Jordan Watkins and freshman forward Christian Young.

Senior forward Ben Simons was Charlotte Country Day’s lone honoree after averaging a double-double this season.

Cannon senior Matthew Godley also was selected.

Lawrence picks up another big offer

This time last year, Charlotte Christian’s Dez Lawrence was just beginning to make a name for himself on the college football recruiting circuit.

Now, it appears his is a household name.

Lawrence, a standout cornerback and running back for the Knights, recently received a scholarship offer from one of the nation’s most recognized program’s, the University of Notre Dame.

The offer from the Fighting Irish is the seventh for Lawrence, who was named to South Charlotte Weekly’s Southern Mecklenburg Football Super Team last fall.

Lawrence also has picked up offers from South Carolina, North Carolina, Duke, Virginia, Kentucky and N.C. State.

The 6-foot, 180-pounder plans on selecting a school long before his senior season ends next fall.

“I’ll probably make my decision at the end of the summer, maybe around the first game or two,” Lawrence said. “I want to get that out of the way and get ready to play ball.”

Lawrence began the 2011 season focusing on the defensive side of the ball, where he totaled 56 tackles, three interceptions and two fumble recoveries. But late in the season, when the team’s primary ball carrier, Bo Hines, went down with an injury, Lawrence took over running back duties and performed admirably. For the season, he rushed for 754 yards on 111 carries, an averaged of 6.8 yards per attempt, and seven touchdowns.

Bucs’ Portland receives national recognition

Charlotte Country Day freshman volleyball player Taylor Portland recently was honored by (Photo courtesy of Brian Rosen)

Last fall, Charlotte Country Day’s -Taylor Portland proved she was one of the best freshman volleyball players in the area.

As it turns out, she’s one of the best in the nation.

Last week, – which is regarded as the largest site for high school, club and college volleyball – listed Taylor among its Frosh 59 list. The list recognizes the top 59 varsity-playing freshmen in the country.

To be considered for the honor, the website said, players “needed to be a varsity starter as a freshman and one of the top talents in your area.”

Portland, a 5-foot-10 outside hitter, was the only player from North Carolina to be honored.

In its selection of Portland to the Frosh 59, the website wrote: “This young player made an explosive impact on her first season of varsity. With Portland leading the stat sheet with 301 kills, 351 digs and 62 aces, Charlotte Country Day enjoyed the winningest season in school history and a semifinal finish in the state playoffs. Portland’s exceptional resume extends beyond her school – she tallied the most kills and kills per game of all freshmen in her state and was second in digs.”

Yes I Can offers spring basketball

Online enrollment has begun for the Yes I Can Basketball spring youth leagues and training academies.

Separate leagues are offered for boys and girls in various age groups. The popular basketball league combines professional teaching, competitive games, clean and safe gyms, all in a positive atmosphere at an affordable rate.
The training academies are two hours of high-energy drills and teaching designed for the player hungry to improve. Programs tip off on March 17.

For more information and to register, visit or call 704 442 1238.

Charlotte Latin names new AD

Charlotte Latin has hired David Gatoux as its new athletics director, the school announced on Feb. 29.

Gatoux succeeds Jimmy Broadway, who will retire at the end of this school year. Gatoux will take over on July 1.

Gatoux currently heads the athletic department at Friends Academy in Locust Valley, N.Y. Before joining Friends Academy in 2007, Gatoux was the athletics director at St. Mary’s School in Raleigh and the Galloway School in Atlanta.

He is a graduate of Ohio’s Denison University (bachelor’s degree) and Ohio University (master’s).

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