Sports Shorts for June 15

by C. Jemal Horton and Andrew Stark

Area girls lacrosse players receive national honors

Charlotte Catholic freshman Natalie Wallon led a trio of athletes from south Charlotte schools who recently received some of the highest honors in high school girls lacrosse.

Wallon, a midfielder, was named to the US Lacrosse All-American team. During the 2012 season, Wallon registered 62 goals, 16 assists, 64 groundballs, 55 draw controls and 62 takeaways. She also was named the Conference 8 Player of the Year.

Charlotte Country Day’s Hanna Krueger and Charlotte Catholic’s Danielle Ruffalo were recognized as honorable-mention selections to the US Lacrosse All-American team.

Krueger, a junior midfielder, scored 88 goals and dished out 46 assists for the Bucs this season while also snaring 93 groundballs and causing 26 turnovers.

Ruffalo, a senior goalie, had 123 saves on the season and posted two shutouts. She has signed to play at Belmont Abbey.

Providence Day athletes pose with the 2011-12 Wachovia Cup. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Howe

Chargers win private-school Wells Fargo Cup

Providence Day recently won the 2011-12 Wells Fargo Cup for the N.C Independent Schools Athletic Association’s 3A classification, ending Charlotte Latin’s eight-year reign.

The Wells Fargo Cup, formerly the Wachovia Cup, is awarded annually to schools that have the best overall interscholastic sports programs.

All schools that finish in the top eight positions, plus ties, in a state championship event receive Wells Fargo Cup points. Points are awarded for all sports on the basis of 50 points for first, 45 for second, 40 for third, 35 for fourth, 30 for fifth, 25 for sixth, 20 for seventh and 15 for eighth.

Cup standings are announced three times each school year after the fall, winter and spring sports seasons, with the overall winner being announced in June.

Providence Day finished with 720 points.

“A great administration plus outstanding coaches plus committed student-athletes equals the Wells Fargo Cup,” Providence Day athletics director David Ahern said in a school press release.

Each Wells Fargo winner receives an engraved silver cup and a banner for permanent display at the school. The Wells Fargo Cups are presented annually at a University of North Carolina football game in Chapel Hill.

Ardrey Kell, Charlotte Catholic walk away with public Wells Fargo titles

After strong seasons that saw them haul in a number of league championships, Ardrey Kell and Charlotte Catholic recently were named winners of the Wells Fargo Conference Cup competitions for the 2011-12 school year.

The Wells Fargo Cup award, sponsored by Wells Fargo and the N.C. High School Athletic Association recognizes the programs that achieve the best overall athletic performance within each of the state’s four competitive classifications. The Wells Fargo Cup previously was known as the Wachovia Cup and has been in existence since 1980.

Ardrey Kell took top honors in the Southwestern 4A conference, thanks to strong performances in boys golf, girls soccer and boys track and field. The Knights finished with 208.5 points, holding off second-place Myers Park (188), Providence (184.5), Butler (164), South Mecklenburg (159.5), Independence (141), East Meck (120) and Rocky River (106.5).

Charlotte Catholic is the ME-GA 7 3A/4A conference’s Wells Fargo winner after winning spring championships in baseball, girls soccer, boys golf, and boys tennis. The Cougars totaled 165 points, followed by Olympic (143), East Gaston (121.5), West Meck (92), Berry Academy (90.5), Harding (60) and Garinger (33).

Nationally recognized leadership trainer Jeff Janssen recently presented a workshop for parents at Charlotte Christian as part of a leadership summit. The event kicked off a new leadership initiative at the school designed to help develop strong leadership skills in young men and women. Photo courtesy of Charlotte Christian

Charlotte Christian hosts leadership summit

Charlotte Christian’s athletics department recently hosted a leadership summit for its athletes, coaches and parents featuring author and speaker Jeff Janssen, founder of the Janssen Sports Leadership Center.

Janssen is the author of numerous books, including “The Team Captain’s Leadership Manual” and “Championship Team Building,” and has developed leadership academies at college athletics departments throughout the country, including the University of North Carolina, Wake Forest, Notre Dame, Georgetown and Stanford.

The leadership summit kicked off a new leadership initiative for Charlotte Christian athletes and coaches that is specifically designed to help students excel by focusing on meaningful ways to develop leadership skills.

As part of the new leadership program, selected team members from each sport will meet monthly with Charlotte Christian athletics director Tom Jamerson and coaches using “The Team Captain’s Leadership Manual” as a guide for facilitating growth in leadership.  Special speakers will also be brought in during the year to develop and encourage the athletes in leadership training.

“Our goal is to train and equip students and coaches to have an expectation of their role as a leader,” Jamerson said in a statement released by the school. “We want students and coaches to firmly understand that leadership is service and to focus on how they can positively impact their team and the culture around them.”

Knights football coach Jason Estep is excited about the new program.

“The Jeff Janssen workshop helped our student-athletes understand their leadership potential and how that translates on and off the field,” Estep said.  “It is an essential piece to the building of young men and women and we look forward to implementing the new program at Charlotte Christian.”

Added Janssen: “I really enjoyed working with the students, coaches, and parents at Charlotte Christian School. I’m sure it will pay off for them in continued success in sports, but more importantly, in developing their students into effective leaders for the Charlotte community and beyond.”

For more information about the Charlotte Christian Leadership Summit, send Jamerson an e-mail at or call 704-366-5657. Additional information about the Janssen Sports Leadership Center can be found by visiting www.­

Morgan Ray (left) and Julia Loesch (right) are Charlotte Prep’s Athletes of the Year. They are pictured with Charlotte Preparatory School’s athletics director Michael Conti. Photo courtesy of Paris Loesch

Charlotte Prep athletes honored

Morgan Ray and Julia Loesch have been named Charlotte Prep Athletes of the Year.

Ray and Loesch, both south Charlotte residents, were honored in May. Both were three-sport athletes during the past four years at Charlotte Preparatory School, a K-through-8 school on Boyce Road, near Sardis Road.

Ray and Loesch both are honor students who will attend Charlotte Country Day in the fall.

Conference 8 announces girls lacrosse awards

Charlotte Catholic swept the Conference 8 postseason awards, as freshman midfielder Natalie Wallon recently was chosen as the Girls Lacrosse Player of the Year, and Dee Bier was named Coach of the Year.

Fellow Cougars Briana Storey, Rachel Wallon, Peri Strassner and Danielle Ruffalo were also named to the all-conference squad.

Ardrey Kell’s Madison Kennedy also made the team.

The all-conference team also included Waxhaw Marvin Ridge’s Mikayla Sweeney, Kensie Lancaster, Amy Collins and Taylor Malseed; Weddington’s Kayla Wynne and Cheyenne Burnam; and Waxhaw Cuthbertson’s Kelly Belue.

Ardrey Kell’s Shelby Santos and Charlotte Catholic’s Julia Shaw received honorable mention.

Bogues conducts basketball camps

Former Charlotte Hornets star Muggsy Bogues will host his annual Fundamental Basketball Camp Monday, June 25 through Friday, June 29.

The camp will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Crews Road Recreation in Matthews for boys and girls ages 6 to14.

For those interested in a later date, the Muggsy Bogues Back to School Basketball Camp will be held Aug. 13-17.

The Fundamental Basketball Camp is designed to develop the player on and off the court.  The camp focuses on three things: fundamentals, the importance of practice and team play, and ensuring all campers enjoy themselves.

The cost is $215 for Matthews residents and $225 for non-Matthews residents.  To register or receive more information, visit

Ex-Providence volleyball coach Bradbury takes over at Carmel Christian School

Former Providence High volleyball coach Karen Bradbury recently has been hired to the same position at Carmel Christian.

Bradbury most recently was a P.E. teacher at Garinger High, having taken that job shortly after she led Providence to the Class 4A state championship last fall. Bradbury had been a coach and P.E. teacher at Providence from 2003-11.

At Providence, Bradbury led the team to three Southwestern 4A conference titles and a pair of state runner-up finishes. Her record with the Panthers was 130-37 (78 percent).

Bradbury has also been a USA Club volleyball coach for 15 years and competed in the national championship tournament multiple times.

“Carmel Christian is very excited about the prospect of having Coach Bradbury on board to help lead the school into the high school years of athletics and particularly developing the volleyball program,” Bill Smith, Carmel Christian’s athletics director, said in an e-mail. “Carmel Christian will be a K-(through)-11th grade school this fall and will be adding varsity volleyball. The school is in the midst of the application process of joining the North Carolina Independent Schools Athletic Association and a local conference for high school sports.”

Bradbury also will teach P.E. at Carmel Christian.

WSOC-TV lands Carolina Panthers game

Initially, it appeared that Carolina Panthers fans who didn’t have the NFL Network wouldn’t be able to view the Carolina Panthers’ Thursday, Sept. 20, home game against the New York Giants, but a local television station has changed that.

WSOC-TV Channel 9 recently acquired the NFL Network broadcast rights to televise the Giants-Panthers game.

Coverage of the game begins at 8 p.m. with kickoff scheduled for 8:20 p.m. The station will broadcast a locally produced, 30-minute pregame special from 7:30 to 8 p.m. The game will be broadcast in HD on WSOC and simulcast on the NFL Network.

“We’re very excited to have the opportunity to bring to Charlotte area fans this important Panthers home game against last year’s Super Bowl champions,” WSOC-TV Vice President and General Manager Joe Pomilla said in a station press release.

Charlotte Latin hosts Nike softball camp

The Nike softball camp, a tour for players ages 6-18, recently chose Charlotte Latin School as a site on its nationwide schedule. Charlotte Latin will host the Nike camp July 9-13.

Hawks coach Eric Smith, who is in his fifth season, will be the camp’s director. Under Smith, Latin has won the last four Charlotte Independent Schools Athletic Association championships and finished among the top three in the state tournament each of the past three years. Under Smith, the Hawks have produced 17 all-conference players and six all-state selections.

At the Nike camp, players are broken into groups of similar ages, skill and goals. According to the Nike camp website, the sessions are designed for “intensive training that is essential to improvement for all skill levels. Every facet of the game is covered with an emphasis on fundamentals to help players become valuable team members.”

For more information, visit www.­ or call 1-800-NIKE-CAMP.

Covenant Day athletes named all-conference

Covenant Day School was well represented, as the Metrolina Athletic Conference recently released its spring sports all-conference teams for baseball, golf, softball and girls soccer.

Peter Englert, Taylor Fisher, Travis Hutchinson and Garrett Vaughn made the all-conference baseball team after pacing the Lions to a 23-7 regular-season record and the first MAC tournament championship in school history.

The Covenant Day girls soccer team was represented by four players – Sarah Brace, Rachel Blong, Emily Hicks and Anna Melton – who helped them win their seventh consecutive conference title.

The Lions’ boys golf team had two all-conference representatives: Luke Cooper and Josh Wall.

LeMay chooses University of Georgia

Butler football star Uriah LeMay made his college choice official on June 1, when he chose the University of Georgia. ranks LeMay, a 6-foot-2, 195-pound rising senior wide receiver, as the 95th overall prospect in the class of 2013 and the 12th-best receiver. At Georgia, he will join his older brother, Christian, a rising sophomore quarterback.

“(Christian and I) have worked out a little bit over the years so we will have to see how it goes playing together,” said LeMay, who made his announcement at his father’s church, Champion Christian Center in south Charlotte.

LeMay said his final three schools came down to the Bulldogs, Virginia Tech and Clemson after he received 30 total scholarship offers. He said the relationship he’s developed with the Georgia coaching staff, along with an attraction to the campus and overall environment at the school, are what ultimately led to his decision.

Having his older brother there didn’t hurt, either.

“It is a dream come true,” LeMay said. “I have a picture in my head of how it might be, but I will have to see how it plays out. Playing at Georgia with Christian is something I have thought about a lot. It’s very exciting.”

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