Adjusted schedule
for KM basketball

 Because the recent snows forced postponement to many basketball games, Kings Mountain High School has adjusted its schedule for the remainder of the regular season:
Wed., Jan. 26 – Crest at Kings Mountain, 4:30. (The home game against Shelby has been cancelled).
Fri., Jan. 28 – Kings Mountain at Forestview, 4:30.
Tue., Feb. 1 – South Point at Kings Mountain, 4 p.m.
Wed., Feb. 2 – Kings Mountain at Shelby, 4 p.m.
Fri., Feb. 4 – Kings Mountain at Stuart Cramer, 4:30.
Sat., Feb. 5 – Forestview at Kings Mountain (JV and varsity boys only), 1 p.m.
Tues., Feb. 8 – Kings Mountain at Ashbrook, 4 p.m.
Wed., Feb. 9 – Hunter Huss at Kings Mountain, 6:30 (varsity boys only).
Fri., Feb. 11 – at Crest, 4 p.m.
Week of Feb. 14 – Conference tournament (times and pairings TBD).
*Note: A 4 p.m. start means there is a girls JV game; a 4:30 start means there is no JV girls game.
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KMHS ladies
edge Huss in OT,
Crest here today

Kings Mountain High’s girls basketball team was able to play their first game in a week Friday night, defeating a very good Hunter Huss team 59-54 in overtime at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium to maintain sole possession of first place in the Big South Conference.
However, with snow coming down outside the KMHS gym the KM-Huss boy’s game was postponed and will be played at a later date.
Heading into this week, both KM teams had a makeup game against county-rival Crest. That game, which would have concluded first round play, was snowed out last Tuesday. The KM men  also have a makeup game with Forestview that was postponed earlier in the season.
Girls coach Nicholas Inman got a super performance from all of his players in Friday’s win over a Huss team that was mentioned as one of the pre-season favorites in the Big South Conference.
Senior Saniya Wilson continued her super all-around play with 28 points, seven rebounds, six assists and five steals. She also took five charging calls.
Khalia King contributed 10 points, three rebounds and two assists.
Wilson and King have been the 1-2 scoring punch for the KM ladies all season – and several seasons before this one.
But every Lady Mountaineer contributed greatly to Friday’s win.
Tyasya Bell barely missed double figures with nine points, and she also pulled down seven rebounds.
CoRey Simpson had eight points and eight rebounds, and Austyn Dixon had seven rebounds.
Alayna Pastrick had five rebounds and three assists, Myracle Davis two points and three rebounds, and Jacie Jarvis two points.
In the afternoon JV game, the KM ladies also were taken to the wire before prevailing 18-13. They improved their record to 4-0.
Kamari Odems led the scoring with seven points. Jailen Moore and Mia Bridges had three each,
Brooklyn Long and Maggie Honeycutt two each, and D’Aundra Ford one.
All Kings Mountain teams will be at home this afternoon and tonight to face arch rival Crest in .conference action.
Kings Mountain returns to BSC action Friday night at Forestview and will host the South Point Red Raiders next Tuesday. JV girls action gets underway at 4 p.m., followed by the JV boys, varsity girls and varsity boys.

Long-time KM Hall of Fame coach
Jimmy Littlejohn will be remembered

Kings Mountain lost one of its all-time best coaches when Jimmy Littlejohn passed away last week at the age of 80.
For more than half of those years, he was a coach of local youth football teams and later was the Athletic Officer for two of KM’s best American Legion baseball teams.
When Littlejohn was inducted into the Kings Mountain Sports Hall of Fame in 1994 he had already amassed 34 years as a coach in midget football. He continued for many years after that while also serving as the Athletic Officer for Kings Mountain Post 155 American Legion baseball.
Although Littlejohn did not coach legion baseball, he was a key figure in what were probably KM’s two finest teams in 1990 and 1991. Featuring players like Paul Brannon, who would later be drafted by the Seattle Mariners, Chad and Chris Plonk, Keith Allen and others, the Post 155 Juniors went all the way to the Area IV finals before falling to two teams, Caldwell County which won the state and played in the Eastern Regionals, and Taylorsville that finished second in the state.
Just a year before that, Post 155 had folded its legion program and its players were split between Shelby and Bessemer City depending on how far they lived from those posts.
In a story in the Herald when he was inducted into the Kings Mountain Sports Hall of Fame, Littlejohn recalled that he and Gene Tignor had gone to a Shelby-Bessemer City Area IV playoff game and talked about how great it would be to revive the legion program. They were told by Shelby officials that they would not release any players back to KM, but Littlejohn learned from a state legion baseball officer that if the players signed an affidavit they could play for Post 155. KMHS coaches Bruce Clark and Ronny Funderburke coached the team.
When he was inducted into the Hall of Fame, Littlejohn said he learned his coaching skills from his high school coach, John Gamble. Although he was not one of the team captains, anytime Coach Gamble met with his two captains he would ask Littlejohn, who was not a starter, to join them.
“I guess he considered me to be the captain of the second team,” Littlejohn noted at the time. “Coach Gamble taught me all the football I know.”
The only coaching experience he had prior to the Optimist programs was helping his friend David Marlowe with the West School community team. Although the original four midget teams were named after schools, schools were not allowed to sponsor youth teams. The original midget teams were West, East, North and Central. A few years later Grover and South (Park Grace) joined the league.
When the school system went to a middle/junior high/senior high school concept midget football ceased to exist and the Optimist Club and city began co-sponsoring junior pee wees, pee wees and junior midget teams that still exist today.

KM teams win Polar Bear track meet at Gamble Stadium

Seven area schools participated in the first Polar Bear Indoor Track Meet Thursday at Kings Mountain High’s Gamble Stadium, and both KM teams came out on top.
The Mountaineers compiled 156 points. Shelby was second at 56 followed by R-S Central 33, East Lincoln 24, Cherryville, 14, Paddyforte Learning Center 10 and Burns 1.
The Lady Mountaineers racked up 233 points, followed by Shelby 43, East Lincoln 26, S Central 25 and Burns four.
Fully automatic timing (FAT) was used. Even though the temperate was cool, KM coach Rayvis Key was very impressed with the Mountaineers’ and Lady Mountaineers’ performances.
For the Mountaineers, DJ Black finished first in the 55 meter dash, 300 meter dash and led the 4x200 relay.
Other first place finishers were Andre Willis in the 55 meter high hurdles, Parker Key in the 3200 meter run, Nicholas Harrison in the pole vault and Marty Lovingood in the long jump. Other members of the winning 4x200 team were Andre Willis, Hunter Cruise and JJ Thurman.
Alexis Jackson was a triple winner for the Lady Mountaineers, taking the high jump, long jump and triple jump.
Other first place winners were Rayna Brown in the pole vault, Taylor Smith in the shot, Divinity Ervin in the 3200 meters, Taniya Brown in the 55 meter high hurdles, Brooke Waseman in the 300 meter dash, Navaeh Brown in the 55 meter dash; and the 4x200 meter relay team consisting of Navaeh Brown, Nyadria Phillips, Lawren Thomas and Brooke Waseman.
The KMHS indoor track teams will be traveling to the only true indoor meet at the JDL Fast Track in Winston Salem on January 20.

Lady Mountaineers
beat Cramer 67-48

Kings Mountain’s women’s basketball team rolled to its fifth straight Big South Conference victory Tuesday night at home, defeating the Stuart Cramer Purple Storm 67-48.
The Lady Mountaineers got another strong performance from all players, with four of them scoring in double figures.
Senior standout Saniya Wilson led the way with 19 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals.
Khalia King contributed 16 points and seven boards.
CoRey Simpson had perhaps her best game ever as a Lady Mountaineer, scoring 15 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. It was her first career double-double as a varsity player.
Tyasya Bell was also in double figures with 12 points. She grabbed five rebounds.
Jacie Jarvis had four points and three rebounds.
Alayna Patrick contributed one point, two rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Stuart Cramer’s Dasia Harris was the game’s top scorer with 28 points. Hadley Womack added 17, Madison Lee two and Zoey Morris one.

Mountaineers sweep 
Ashbrook to stay top BSC

Kings Mountain High’s varsity basketball teams went into last night’s game against the Crest Chargers atop the Big South 3A Conference standings.
The KM teams swept Gastonia Ashbrook Friday night on the road with the girls handing the Lady Green Wave their first conference loss in more than two years, 45-41, and the boys rolling 81-50.
The Mountaineers had a good 1-2 scoring punch with Zeke Cannedy stripping the nets for 32 points and Maddox James 18. Zavion Smith added nine points and Curtis Simpson and Eli Osborne seven apiece.
The Lady Mountaineers carried a 6-0 conference record into last night’s game while Crest came to town with a 2-2 conference mark. The Lady Green Wave fell into second place with a 5-1 BSC record.
The KM men came in with a 5-0 mark and Crest 3-0. The Mountaineers still have a first round makeup game with Forestview.

Lady Mountaineer Coach Nicholas Inman got a great overall performance from all of his players.
Khalia King had a super night with a game-high 20 points which included 4-of-7 from three-point land.
Senior standout Saniya Wilson continued her fine all-around play with 16 points, four rebounds and five assists.
Myracle Davis had three  points and two boards, Austyn Dixon two points and  three rebounds, CoRey Simpson two points and five rebounds, and Tyasya Bell two points and a team high nine rebounds.
The Lady Mountaineers held the lead most of the game, but it was close throughout. KM was on top 11-6 after the first quarter, 19-14 at the half and 28-25 going into the fourth quarter.
The KM JVs also came out a big winner, 32-20.
Kamari Odems led the way with 11 points. Jailen Moore scored seven, Riley Powers five, Brooklyn Whitlock five, and Maggie Honeycutt four.
Goforth led Ashbrook with nine points, followed by Rojhaya with six, Hayes three and Mooring two.
The Kings Mountain teams will remain at home Friday to begin second round action against the Hunter Huss Huskies. Kings Mountain will then travel to North Gaston next Tuesday before returning home for a non-conference game with county rival Shelby on Wednesday.
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KM’s Maddox James (4) drives the lane for two points in Kings Mountain’s thrilling 88-82 win over Stuart Cramer last week at Parker Gym. Photo by Gary Smart

Mountaineers weather their
first BSC ‘Storm,’ 88-82

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers survived a tough battle from the Stuart Cramer Purple Storm in Big South 3A Conference basketball action Tuesday night at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium but remained undefeated in the conference with an 88-82 victory.
After leading most of the game, the Mountaineers ran into foul trouble in the second half and saw Cramer come from behind to earn their first lead since early in the game, 70-69, on a Will Kelly basket with six minutes remaining.
But Maddox James, who played one of his best games of the season with 19 points and numerous rebounds, put the Mountaineers back out front 74-72 and they were able to hold on for the victory.
Cramer stayed within striking distance but, even with KM’s leading scorer Zeke Cannedy on the bench with five fouls, the Mountaineers were able to survive behind clutch play by James, sophomore guard Zavion Smith and others.
Cramer got to within 84-80 with 26 seconds remaining, but had to foul and Smith went to the line to go 4-for-4 and wrap things up.
The Storm scored the game’s first points to go up 2-0 and led 15-14 with 1:25 left in the first period. Cannedy scored the last six points of the period to put KM on top 21-17. The Mountaineers built a 45-35 lead following a Cannedy basket with a minute left in the half, but the visitors rallied to cut the margin to 48-42 at the break.
Will Kelly (24 points) and Francisco Vardezas  (11) accounted for 35 of the Storm’s first half points.
The Mountaineers were able to get their lead to double-digits (63-53) on a bucket by James with just over a minute left in the third quarter, but the Storm began brewing again and cut it to 67-60 heading into the final eight minutes. The visitors scored the first seven points of the third quarter to knot things up at 67-all with 6:50 left in the game.
Cannedy’s three put the Mountaineers up 72-70 and they were able to build a 78-72 lead before Smith was hurt and had to go to the bench with 4:05 left.
Things got a little shaky in the final two minutes as a pair of technical free throws by Kelly brought the visitors to within four at 82-78. But, upon getting the ball out of bounds the Storm committed a charge. KM got a big bucket by James for an 84-78 lead. Cramer’s Talen Whitley followed a miss shot with a put-back to make it 84-80 with 26 seconds left.
With the Mountaineers now on offense, The Storm had to foul for a chance to win, but Smith hit 4-of-4 from the charity stripe to seal the deal.
Despite his time on the bench due to fouls, Cannedy still led the Mountaineers with 32 points. He and James were joined in double figures by Linney with 12 and Smith and Simpson with 10 each.
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Kohen Johnson signs with CCC 

Kings Mountain High School swimmer Kohen Johnson recently signed to continue his education and swimming career at Cleveland Community College.

Patriots open 
season with 
win over Crest

Kings Mountain Middle School’s boys basketball team opened its season last week with a thrilling 54-48 overtime victory over county rival Crest.
Crest led most of the game and was up 46-45 with 30 seconds to play before KM’s Bradley Floyd hit a free throw to send the game into overtime.
The Patriots hit 4-for-5 from the field in OT to win going away. Charlie Foster hit back-to-back baskets to get the run going.
Brayden Mull led the Patriots with a double-double (12 points and 13 rebounds). Floyd had 11 points and six assists.
Caleb Nixon scored 19 points including 4-for-8 from three point land. Tucker Robinette had five points and five assists, Silas Tate five points, and Charlie Foster four points and five rebounds.
Crest jumped out to a 13-10 lead after the first quarter. KM was led by Mull with six points on 3-of-3 shooting.
The second period saw KM strike back with a pair of threes by Caleb Nixon and one by Floyd for a 25-23 halftime lead.
Kings Mountain turned cold in the third period and Crest hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to take a 37-32 into the fourth period.
For the game, the Patriots went 9-for-18 from three point land.
The Patriots had 15 assists, 30 rebounds and five blocked shots.  

Elite Trailblazers
basketball begins

Kings Mountain Elite Trailblazers got their basketball season underway last week with action in four divisions.
Players of the Week were:
K-2nd grade /8U Beginners Division, Xzavier Davis of the Elite Dawg Breeding 9 points;
Third-fourth grade/10U Elementary Division, Harper Hollifield of Clutch Elite, 22 points;
Fifth-sixth grade/12U Intermediate Division, Silas Tate of Big Elite, 18 points; and
Seventh-eighth grade Middle School Division, Tucker Robinette of WACG, 34 points.
Total results for week one included:
Elite Aces 23, Elite Royalty 9 – Leading scorers for Elite Aces, K.J. Moore 10, Sadie Bert 5, O’Brian Smith 4, Mason Pruitt 3, Cameron Twitty 1. Elite Royalty – Justin Bennett 6, Carson Hovis 2, Marku Hutchens 1.
Elite Dawg Breeding 20, #Elite Knicks 18, in OT.
Elite Dawg Breeding: Xzavier Davis 9, Sienna Black 4, Joseph Bell III 4, Kendrick Ford 2, Antonio Elder 1. #Elite Knicks: Zander Smith 9, Jasir Garner 6, Khamoni Marable 2, Legaci Hamrick 1.
3rd-4th grade elementary Division:
Clutch Elite 27, Elite Kings 15.
Clutch Elite – Harper Hollifield 22, G’hailyn Smith 3, Kylen Owens 2. Elite Kings – Antonia Surratt 10, Jeremiah Plummer 3, Michael Rice 2.
Elite Fire 8, Elite Swaggers 7.
Elite Fire – Zoey Burke 5, Ayden Harris 3. Elite Swaggers – Cyrus Smith 4, Seth Tate 3.
5th-6th Intermediate Division:
BIG ELITE 33, Elite Pressure 18.
BIG ELITE – Silas Tate 18, Uriah Lipscomb 13, Trevor Dalton 2. Elite Pressure – K.J. Bell 12, Kingston Moore 6.
Elite Outlaws 31, Elite Warriors 27
Elite Outlaws – Carlos Boyce 12, Mason Powers 7, Ira Thomas 6, Jasmine Twitty 2. Ashtun Hall 2, Cheyanne Cannedy 2. Elite Warriors – Xavier Hutchens 21, Jamarius Hill 4, Timazjhe Phillips 2.
7th-8th Middle School division:
WeAllCanGo 45, Elite Hawkins 36
WACG – Tucker Robinette 34, Ethan Dibruno 6, Silas Tate 3, Brayden Carroll 2. Elite Hawks – Malachi Powell 18, Johnathan Charles 9, K.J. Bell 4, Farri Martin 4, Trevor Dalton 1.
Hoop Dreams 40, Elite Hawks 36
Hoop Dreams – Mack Jordan 18, Braylon Brown 8, Christian Adams 6, Carlos Boyce 5, N. Sol Ohana 3.
Elite Hawks – Malachi Powell 12, K.J. Bell 9, Johnathan Charles 8, A. Hall 4, Farri Martin 3.

Mountaineers sweep South Point,
big tests coming against Wave, Crest

Kings Mountain High’s basketball teams resumed their season Friday night at Belmont with a sweep of the South Point Red Raiders. The girls won 53-38 and the boys 85-73.
The result left the Mountaineers in a tie for first place in the Big South 3A Conference with the Crest Chargers going into a key BSC match-up with a very good Stuart Cramer five at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium last night.
The KM ladies also went into the game in a tie for first place with the Ashbrook Lady Green Wave. The top spots in the conference will begin to play out when the Kings Mountain teams travel to Ashbrook Friday night and return home the following Tuesday against Crest to complete first round action.
Senior standout Zeke Cannedy continued his torrid scoring pace Friday with 48 points, those coming just a few days after his school record 53 against Gaston Day in the Mountaineers’ Holiday Tournament at Parker Gym.
Several other players had great outings for Coach Grayson Pierce’s team, which improved to 3-0 in the conference and 6-5 overall. Curtis Simpson had 14 points and eight rebounds, Maddox James 12 points and seven boards, and sophomore Zavion Smith dished out 10 assists.
The Lady Mountaineers went to 4-0 in the conference and 7-2 overall with a 53-38 victory.
They got off to a slow start, trailing the Lady Red Raiders 10-9 after the first quarter. But they started the second quarter red hot and outscored South Point 19-8 to go into the break with a 28-18 lead. They continued to pour it on in the third period and led 41-26 going into the final eight minutes.
Khalia King led all scorers with 25 points and she also had two steals and a block. Saniya Wilson joined her in double figures with 13 and also had a good all-around game with five boards, seven assists and three steals.
Austyn Dixon contributed six points, four boards, two assists and a steal; CoRey Simpson five points and eight boards; Myracle Davis two points, seven rebounds, two assists and a block; Alayna Patrick two points, three rebounds and a steal, and Tyasya Bell four rebounds and a steal.
Kings Mountain’s JV girls defeated the JV Lady Raiders 26-17 in the afternoon opener. Mia Bridges scored 10 points, Desiree Thomas six, Kamari Odems five, Maggie Honeycutt two, DAundra Ford two and Broklyn Long one.

Mountaineers’ annual Christmas tourney

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Zeke Cannedy, left photo, shoots a free throw and, right photo, cans a shot from the outside on his way to a school record 53-point scoring total in last week’s Mountaineer Christmas Tournament at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium. Photos by Gary Smart

Zeke Cannedy cans school record 53 points
in Mountaineers’ annual Christmas tourney

Gaston Day defeated Kings Mountain 83-74 in the championship game of last week’s Mountaineer Christmas Tournament at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium, but all eyes were on KM’s Zeke Cannedy who stripped the nets for 53 points and a new KMHS men’s scoring record.
The KMHS women’s scoring mark of 58 points was set by Judy Medlin against Belmont in 1958.
Cannedy’s effort, as well as his teammates’, kept the Mountaineers close to one of North Carolina’s private school powerhouses but the visitors outscored the home team 21-16 in the fourth quarter to clinch the victory.
The Spartans managed to barely lead after each of the first three periods – 21-20 after the first, 46-41 at the half and 62-58 going into the final eight minutes.
Included in Cannedy’s 51 point total were 10 three pointers, also the most any Mountaineer has ever canned in a single game.
The Mountaineers advanced to the title game by rolling past Davidson Day 88-36 in the opening round and squeezing past a very good 4A Charlotte Independence team 61-60 in the semi-finals.
Maddox James’ put back of a missed free throw attempt at the buzzer gave the Mountaineers the semi-finals victory.
James led the scoring with 21 points, Curtis Simpson had 12 and Cannedy 10.
Kings Mountain returns to Big South Conference action Friday at South Point with girls action beginning at 6 p.m.
The KM teams return to Parker Gymnasium on Tuesday, January 11 when the Stuart Cramer Purple Storm comes to town.

7 – at South Point
11- Stuart Cramer
14 – at Ashbrook
18 – Crest
21 – Hunter Huss
25 – at North Gaston
26 – Shelby*
28 – at Forestview

1 – South Point
2 – at Shelby
4 – at Cramer
8 – Ashbrook
11 – at Crest
14, 16, 18- BSC tournament (place and times to be determined).
22 – State playoffs begin
KM’s Robert Kendrick tries to get to the outside in Friday’s game with Franklin at Gamble Stadium. Photos by Gary Smart

Late 97-yard drive lifts Mountaineers over
Franklin 21-17 in playoff opener

 Coming into their first round NCHSAA playoff opener against the Kings Mountain Mountaineers Friday, the Franklin Panthers’ game plan was obviously to run the clock and keep the ball away from the KM offense.
It almost worked as the visitors took a 17-14 lead into the final two minutes of the game. But with Franklin facing a fourth and two from the KM four-yard line with 2:08 remaining, the Mountaineer defense stopped Panther quarterback Chris McGuire a yard short of the first down marker and then the offense drove 97 yards in 11 plays to score on a 21-yard pass from quarterback Lamont Littlejohn Jr. to sophomore wide receiver Bryson Brown with 17.4 seconds remaining to defeat the Panthers 21-17 and send the Mountaineers to a second round bout with the  West Charlotte Lions Friday at 7:30 at the Waddell High School Stadium in Charlotte.
And, if the Panthers had any hope of scoring in those final seconds it was squashed on the ensuing kickoff when they fumbled and KM’s Quay Sanders recovered the ball at the KM 31 to seal the deal.
“That was an exciting finish for sure,” said Mountaineer head coach Greg Lloyd. “We made a great stand on defense, and that winning drive has to be one of the most impressive drives we’ve had since I’ve been here. We were backed up and had to convert play after play to have a chance to win. It was just awesome.”
Littlejohn, who finished with 16 of 26 passing for 223 yards and no interceptions, got the winning drive started with completions of 19 yards to Brown and 30 to D’Andre Hoyle for a first down at the Franklin 48. Facing third and 10 after two incompletions, he hit Jake Lloyd for a 14-yarder to the Franklin 34 with 1:01 showing on the clock.
 A four-yard reception by Brown and a first down run for 11 yards out of bounds around right end by Robert Kendrick gave the Mountaineers a first down at the Panther 21 with 36.1 seconds remaining. After two incompletions – one of which was in the end zone - Littlejohn sent Brown down the right sideline and hit him with the game-winning TD. After Jaden Ellis’ PAT, the Mountaineers kicked short toward the KM sideline but the Panthers couldn’t come up with the ball and KM’s Quay Sanders recovered it. With 12.4 seconds on the clock and Franklin out of time outs, Littlejohn took a knee to cap the comeback.
“I thought Littlejohn did a great job of finding his receivers,” Lloyd said. “The offensive line held up very well and the receivers made good catches.”
Throughout the game, the two teams matched yardage about evenly with KM having 209 in the air and 76 on the ground and the Panthers 142 on the ground and 128 in the air, but Franklin had 64 plays to KM’s 45. KM ran the ball just 18 times with Robert Kendrick getting 55 yards on 12 carries and Micah Ward 21 on six totes.
Franklin won the opening coin toss and deferred to the second half. Both teams were stopped on their initial drives, but after taking over following a punt at its own 45 the Mountaineers took eight plays to score on a one-yard run by Ward. Ellis’ PAT made it 7-0 at the 5:37 mark of the first quarter.
Along the way, Lloyd caught two passes for 16 yards, Brown one for 20 and Kendrick had three straight carries for 19 yards to set up Ward’s TD run.
With Franklin facing fourth and four at their own 19 with just 2:14 remaining in the half and facing a punting situation, KM called time-out but upon returning to the field the Mountaineers were penalized for having 12 men on the field. That gave the Panthers a first down at the 24. They got highlight reel plays of 19 yards on a run by Kellen Stiles for a first down at the 48, followed three plays later by a backward pass from McGuire to Pollack back to McGuire for a first down at the KM 19. A 15-yard completion to the two was followed by an incompletion and a late flag for interference, giving the visitors the ball at the one yard line. McGuire’s sneak sent the two teams into the halftime break tied at 7.
The teams traded 3-and-outs to open the third quarter. Following KM’s punt the Mountaineers were penalized 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct and Franklin took possession at the KM 47. Seven plays later, the Panthers were on the KM 31 facing fourth and seven. Pollock then  caught a tipped pass for a 14-7 lead with 3:35 on the clock.
After the ensuing kickoff, KM was immediately penalized 10 yards for holding and started from its own 29. Littlejohn hit Brown for a 52-yard catch and run to the Panther 19. Kendrick and Ward worked the ball down to the five and with 0:05 left on the third quarter clock Littlejohn hit Lloyd with a five-yard TD and Ellis booted the PAT to tie the score at 14.
Franklin answered quickly. Helped by a 31-yard reception by Pollock and a holding call on KM, the Panthers worked their way to the 12 before Javier Currie’s nine-yard sack put them at the 21 with a second and 18. After two incomplete passes, Erik Munoz came on to kick a field goal to put the Panthers up 17-14 with just 7:01 remaining.
The Panthers pooch kicked and recovered a fumble at the KM 34. Aided by two penalties – the last of which put them at the KM four with 2:12 left – they called time to decide a play. Instead of going for a field goal – which would have only put them up by six points – they went for what would have been a clinching TD but the Mountaineers stopped McGuire at the three, setting the stage for their big comeback victory.
“Stopping them down there was a great team effort,” Coach Lloyd noted. “The quarterback sort of bobbled the snap and that helped us.”
Lloyd was happy with the play of all of his players, and he pointed out that in the second half the Mountaineers had only two seniors and one junior on defense.  The rest were sophomores.
“CJ Houser, a sophomore, did a good job,” Lloyd said. “He made several tackles and that was his first varsity experience. We had a lot of young guys out there that we threw into the fire and we’re really proud of them. Alex Jackson, on the offensive line, blocked really well and Seth Neal came in and played very well at tight end. A lot of people did very good.”

Scenes from Mountaineers Vs. Franklin

Photos by Gary Smart
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Kushman 65th in State meet – Kings Mountain High’s Thalia Kushman finished 65th with a time of 22:01.57 in Saturday’s NCHSAA 3A cross country meet.

Kushman 65th in State meet

Kings Mountain High’s Thalia Kushman finished 65th with a time of 22:01.57 in Saturday’s NCHSAA 3A cross country meet.


Photos by Gary Smart

Lady Patriot spikers open 
with impressive victories

Kings Mountain Middle School’s volleyball ladies got their season off to a great start last week with 3-0 victories over North Lincoln and Burns.
In their opener on Tuesday, the Lady Patriots defeated a good North Lincoln team at home, 25-19, 25-22, 25-15. Thursday’s game at Burns was a good one, too, with the Lady Patriots sweeping again 25-12, 25-8, 25-4.
In the opener, Camden Pasour led the Lady Patriots with 16 serve receptions, 13 digs, 11 service points, five assists and 20 kills.
Ava Tipton added four serve receptions, 16 digs one assist and 13 service points.
Abigail Hedgepath had two digs, eight service points, three kills and 23 assists.
At Burns, Pasour had another complete game with 13 kills, eight assists, nine serve receptions, eight digs, four aces and 18 serve points.
Megan Harris added four kills, 12 aces and 21 service points.
Hedgepath contributed nine service points, three aces and 16 assists.
“Ava Tipton, Sarah Bouchard and Madi Brooke did their job well controlling the defense and giving our setters controlled passes while Kenzlie Morris and Ruby Osborne were a definite presence on the net both offensively and defensively,” noted Coach Lindsay Ellis. “This win was a great team effort.”
The Lady Patriots were scheduled to play at home Tuesday.
Nov. 16 – East Lincoln; Nov. 18 at Lincolnton; Nov. 22 Burns; Nov. 23 at West Lincoln; Nov. 30 at East Lincoln; Dec. 2 Lincolnton; Dec. 7 at North Lincoln; Dec. 9 Playoffs (TBD); Nov. 14 – Conference championship (TBD).

KM Mountaineers
face West Charlotte
Friday at Waddell  

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers will travel to Waddell High School in Charlotte Friday to face a very good West Charlotte team in the second round of the NCHSAA 3A state football championship playoffs.
The Lions are a perennial power in Charlotte Mecklenburg and have numerous championships to their credit. They are 7-3 on the season but those losses came to 4A powers Mallard Creek, Hough and Chambers.
The Lions and Mountaineers have one common opponent. West Charlotte reached the second round of the state playoffs by defeating a good Stuart Cramer team 34-10 last week while the Mountaineers were defeating a good Franklin Panther team 21-17. In a Big South game earlier in the year, Kings Mountain defeated Stuart Cramer 41-28.
“West Charlotte is a very dangerous team,” says Kings Mountain head coach Greg Lloyd. “They have a lot of great athletes and they play in a very tough conference. They have tons of speed, good size and will be the most athletic team we’ve faced.
“They operate out of a spread and they pass and run the ball very effectively,” Lloyd noted. “Their quarterback is a dual threat. He has a great arm and legs. They run out of a 3-4 defense, and it is very good.
“They are a well-rounded, good team,” he said. “They’ve played a very tough schedule. Two of their losses were to Hough and Chambers, two of the best teams in the state.”
Without a doubt, the Lions are more experienced than the Mountaineers as most of their starters are seniors. Kings Mountain doesn’t have many seniors but their sophomores and juniors have gained valuable experience this year.
“This is going to be a very tough test,” Lloyd said. “We’re happy to be going  another round. We look forward to a good week of practice to get ready and hopefully keep advancing in the playoffs.”
Lloyd expects his versatile senior Peyton Fisher, who was injured in the first half of last week’s game, to be back along with Zay Smith, who sat out last week with an injury.
“Zay will help us a lot,” Lloyd said. “Having him out last week really hurt us, especially in the second half.
“Robert Kendrick played with a turf toe last week. Hopefully he will be back at full strength.” 
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Paige Bagwell & teammates celebrate

Paige Bagwell’s teammates celebrate with her after she reached 1,500 career assists in last week’s state playoff win over Crest at Parker Gym.
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Another Myrical Davis spike for the Lady Mountaineers in last week’s playoff win over Crest at KMHS.

KM spikers lose
to North Iredell

Kings Mountain High’s women’s volleyball team fell to a strong North Iredell team 29-27, 25-11, 25-10 in the quarter-final round of the NCHSAA 3A state playoffs Saturday at North Iredell.
The winners advance to the state 3A semi-finals with a 25-1 overall record while the Lady Mountaineers, who won the Big South Conference with a perfect 14-0 record, ended with a 21-3 overall mark.
Aaliyah Byers completed a great high school career with 16 kills and Paige Bagwell ended her career with eight digs and 24 assists.
Meile Songaila had five kills and 11 digs, Myracle Davis four kills and Caroline Barber 19 digs.
Before losing on Saturday, the Lady Mountaineers eliminated East Lincoln 26-24, 25-16, 25-13 in a second round playoff match Tuesday, and county rival Crest 25-17, 25-12, 25-14 in a third round match Thursday.
Against East Lincoln, Songaila had 13 serve receptions, six digs, three blocks, 16 kills and 13 service points.
Byers had two serve receptions, 10 digs, three blocks, two assists, 20 kills and five service points.
Barber had 14 serve receptions, 15 digs, three assists and three service points.
Bagwell had seven digs, five blocks, 38 assists, two kills and five service points.
Davis added four digs,
six blocks and six kills.
Against the Lady Chargers, Bagwell dished out 31 assists to give her over 1,500 for her four-year career. She also added three blocks, two digs and eight service points.
Byers had 21 kills, two blocks, five serve receptions, two digs and four service points.
Songaila added nine kills, one block, eight serve receptions, 12 digs and four service points.
Barber had 13 digs, six serve receptions and 27 service points.

Tough Franklin team here Friday for first
round game in NCHSAA football playoffs

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers will host a traditionally strong Franklin team Friday night at 7:30 in the opening round of the NCHSAA 3A state playoffs.
While the Mountaineers’ record on paper is a couple games better, Coach Greg Lloyd warns that Franklin is very dangerous and capable of beating anyone.
“They’re traditionally a very strong program,” he noted. “They run and pass very well. Their quarterback is a very good passer. They have a big running back and linebacker that runs hard. They are well coached and a traditionally strong program.”
Franklin, whose long line of good head coaches included former Duke University head coach Fred Goldsmith, faces tough teams on a weekly basis. Those teams include the likes of Tuscola, Canton Pisgah, Smokey Mountain, West Henderson and TC Roberson, all of whom are traditionally strong and have many championships to their credit.
The Mountaineers will be operating at less than a hundred percent as they have a lot of players injured, including their leading tackler AJ Richardson who is probably out for the rest of the season.
Several other players were injured in last week’s Big South Conference championship game with Crest and will also be out this week. They include Zavion Smith. “He was out for the whole second half and it really hurt us when he went out,” Coach Lloyd noted.
Sel Randolph, who had one of his best games of the season last week, hurt his knee and will probably be out as well. He is on crutches with a swollen knee.
Running back Caleb Holland, who had just returned to the lineup for the Ashbrook game, was hurt again against Crest and will also be out.
“It will be running back by committee this week with (Robert) Kendrick, Micah (Ward) and Jake (Lloyd),” Coach Lloyd noted. “Jake also plays slot so he’ll probably stay out there on offense if Sel can’t play.”
Lloyd will look for Andre Willis to get more playing time, and some younger players should see some action too.
“We’re pretty depleted right now,” Lloyd said. “We have a lot of people going both ways. It’s supposed to be cold Friday so that might be a good thing.
“The key for us will be to stop their #15 (junior tailback/tight end Ty Handley (who comes in with 953 yards rushing and nine
TDs),” Lloyd said. “He is a big kid.”
The KM defense will also have to defend well against a good passing quarterback, Chris McGuire, who has passed for 1,420 yards and 14 touchdowns. His favorite target is wide receiver Keagan Pollock (#1) who has 45 catches for 821 yards and nine TDs.
 “They move the ball in the air and on the ground and finish drives,” Lloyd says.  “We have to get a lot of people to the ball, play hard and have fun. If we do that we have a good shot at advancing.”
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Jake Lloyd (4) runs behind the blocking of Alex Jackson (57) and Robert Kendrick (5) in last week’s game with Crest at

Mountaineers fall to Crest 42-20

Two big defensive plays late in the third quarter and early in the fourth and the running of Mari Adams were the big differences as the Crest Chargers broke open a close game for a 42-20 victory over the Mountaineers in the Big South Conference championship game Friday night at Kings Mountain’s John Gamble Stadium.
Adams was an offensive highlight reel, gaining 264 yards rushing which was by far the top offensive output against the Mountaineer D this season; but during crunch time the big plays came when the Chargers intercepted a KM pass in the end zone and recovered a fumble on a potential KM TD drive early in the fourth quarter.
The Mountaineers, down 21-14, were on the Crest five with a first and goal late in the third period but couldn’t get in. Three plays  later with the Chargers on the 11, Adams got off a 63-yard run before being chased down by D’Andre Hoyle. But, three plays later Adams went four yards into the end zone and all of a sudden Crest had doubled the score to 28-14.
Kings Mountain was able to answer with a 60-yard drive which featured a 27-yard reception by Peyton Fisher and a 15-yard touchdown pass from Littlejohn to Hoyle to get back to within a TD at 28-20.
KM later made it to the Crest 41 but lost the ball on a fumble with 6:50 left in the game. Two plays later, the Chargers’ Carter Green broke a 29-yard touchdown for a 35-20 lead. After the kickoff, the Chargers’ D held the Mountaineers to three and out and they ran the clock from the 4:29 mark to 52.8 seconds to score on six straight carries by Green to account for the final margin.
Kings Mountain had one of its lowest offensive outputs of the season, gaining just 107 yards rushing and 186 passing for a total of 293 yards but opened with a 74-yard drive to take a 7-0 lead on a 16-yard touchdown reception by Bryson Brown and an extra point kick by Jaden Ellis.
Fisher made three key tackles, and Zaylen Ramos and Curtis Simpson had tackles for loss to hold that lead through the end of the first quarter.
An 18-yard run by Robert Kendrick and 12-yard reception by Hoyle got the Mountaineers to the Crest 43 but they lost the ball on downs. Keyed by a 22-yard sneak by Green, the Chargers drove 56 yards in seven plays with Adams covering the final three to tie the score.
A pass interception by Brandon McCall and return to the KM 42 set up a seven-play drive capped by Adams’ 17-yard run to put Crest up 14-7 with 3:44 left in the half.
Despite an eight-yard quarterback sack, the Mountaineers got big pass receptions by Bryson Brown for 14 yards, Zay Smith for 22 and Sel Randloph for 11 to set up a 26-yard TD pass from Littlejohn to Brown for a 14-14 halftime tie.
Crest took the lead for good on the first drive of the second half, moving 80 yards in 13 plays to score on a six yard run by Adams. KM answered with its drive to the Crest five but couldn’t get it in as a run for no gain followed by two incomplete passes led to the Crest INT in the end zone.

KM freshman golfer Watson
plays in Western 3A Regional

Kings Mountain High freshman golfer Kaliyah Watson shot a 106 to tie for 32nd place in last week’s Western Regional tournament at Glen Oaks Golf Club in Maiden.
“Unfortunately, she didn’t qualify for the 3A state championship but she gained some good experience in this tournament,” said KM Coach Kevin Moss. “She was able to see what she needs to do in preparation for the 2022 golf season and make it to the state championship.
“She had a very successful freshman year,” Moss added. “She was a match medalist for one conference match and co-medalist for another. She finished fifth overall individually in the conference, made the All-Conference team and qualified for the 3A Western Regional tournament.
“She loves to practice,” he added, “and has made great strides in her golf game since she started playing in the seventh grade. Most importantly, she is a good student and has a great attitude about everything. She always has a positive outlook.”
Moss and Watson are appreciative to Kings Mountain Country Club for allowing them to practice and have matches there.
“Ken Nantz and his staff always accommodate both our golf programs to make sure we can practice and host matches,” Moss said. “They always find a way for us to host a match even if there is a scheduling conflict. They are really good to the junior players in Kings Mountain.

KMMS golf third in county,
sixth in conference tourney

Kings Mountain Middle’s golf team ended its season last week with a third place finish in the Cleveland County tournament and sixth place finish in the nine-team Tri-County Conference tournament.
The Patriots shot a 195 in the county match. Burns finished first with a 181.
KMMS was led by Jordan Buckner and Cameron Laye with 45s. Joseph Johnson shot 48, Brantley Deaton 57, and Mylin Eckard and Eli Caldwell 58 each.
Medalist was Minyan Ou of Burns with a 39.
Buckner led the Patriots with a 45 in the conference championship tournament at Lincoln Country Club. The team score was 195.
Laye and Johnson both shot 48s. Caldwell had a 54, and Eckard and Lance Miller each shot 61.
Rutherford County Middle School was the team champion with a 173. Individual champion was Brandon Bolinger of East Lincoln Middle with a 34.
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KM’s Zavion Wilson looks for running room against a good Crest defense in last week’s JV season finale at Crest. KM won 20-16. 

JV Mountaineers beat Crest
20-16 in season finale,

sweep Big South and finish with overall 8-1 record

Kings Mountain scored on its first three possessions to take a quick 20-0 lead, but it took a pass interception by Curtis Simpson at the five yard line to clinch a 20-16 victory over Crest in the JV season finale Thursday night at the Chargers’ stadium.
The victory gave Coach Diron Bell’s Mountaineers a final record of 6-0 against Big South Conference teams and 8-1 overall. They were originally scheduled to face the Ashbrook Green Wave Thursday but that game, as well as the Chargers’ scheduled game with Hunter Huss, was cancelled.
The win also gave the JVs a record of 12-1 during the 2021 calendar year. In an abbreviated four-game schedule in the spring the Mountaineers went undefeated with victories over all three Cleveland County schools and South Point. The fall 2020 season was cancelled due to COVID.
On the game’s opening possession, CJ Houser broke a 61-yard run to the Crest 10 yard line to set up a three-yard touchdown run by Thomas Fair. After Max Thompson’s point-after from placement the Mountaineers appeared to be taking command.
After the defense held the Chargers to three and out, it took just four more plays for the Mountaineers to complete a 77-yard drive with Houser scoring on a 37-yard pass from quarterback Kylei Anderson. Again, Thompson split the uprights for a 14-0 lead.
After the ensuing kickoff, Crest fumbled on its first play and KM took possession at the Chargers’ 12 yard line. Zayvion Wilson’s one-yard run gave the Mountaineers their 20-0 lead.
Crest got on the scoreboard for the first time with 2:02 left in the half when a high snap on a KM punt attempt sailed out the back of the end zone for a safety.
Then, things began happening fast for the Crest offense.
Tate Ruff returned the Mountaineers’ kickoff for a touchdown, and then ran a two-point conversion to cut the score to 20-10.
That score stood until halftime, but on the first series of the second half the Chargers romped 63 yards in eight plays to score on a two-yard run. Their two-point conversion pass attempt was intercepted by Zayvion Wilson, and with 6:43 left on the third quarter clock the scoring was over.
But, not the excitement – and the jitters!
Crest was able to march to the KM 30 before Curtis Simpson intercepted a pass. But, again, the Crest D held. The Mountaineers threw Ruff for a two-yard loss to end the third quarter and the Chargers had to punt the ball away with nine minutes left in the game.
The Mountaineers appeared to have the game in hand after a 12-yard run by Anderson gave them a first down at the 48 with just over two minutes left on the clock. But Crest recovered a fumble at the KM 48. Three plays later, KM got a big sack at midfield, but was penalized for a late hit and Crest was on the KM 37 with a first and ten. The Chargers went for the bomb but Simpson made the big interception at the five with 1:24 remaining. With the Chargers out of time outs, the Mountaineers took a knee twice to run out the clock. 
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Kings Mountain’s Thalia Kushman leads the pack in last week’s Big South championship cross country meet at Ashbrook High School in Gastonia.

KM volleyball sweeps BSC title, 
opens playoffs with big victory

Kings Mountain’s Thalia Kushman ran a 22:05 to win the women’s race and also the Big South Conference Cross Country Player of the Year Award in the annual conference meet last week at Gastonia Ashbrook.
Even though the two Kings Mountain teams didn’t win a team title - those went to the South Point women and Stuart Cramer men - they did place eight runners on the All-Conference teams. Joining Kushman on the ladies’ team were Divinity Ervin in fourth place, Brooke Waseman ninth, Nicole Poston 12th and Sindy Ulloa 14th.
Kings Mountain runners on the men’s All-Big South team were Parker Key who finished fourth, Isaiah Watts, ninth, and Kohen Johnson, 15th.
In the women’s race, South Point was followed by Kings Mountain, Stuart Cramer, and Forestview. The Lady Mountaineers had beaten the Lady Red Raiders twice in the regular season, “but they brought out their full team for this run,” KM Coach Rayvis Key noted.
Two South Point runners – Maddie Franks and Rachel Tolbert, ran second and third
and another, Emme Lewandowski, finished fifth behind Kings Mountain’s Divnity Ervin, who ran the course in 23:42.19.
Nicholas Willer of Cramer was the men’s individual winner in 16:20.43. Austin Brotemarkle of Forestview and Zachary Willer of Cramer finished just ahead of Key for the second and third place ribbons.
Isaiah Watts finished eighth to give the Mountaineers two runners in the top 10.
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Myracle Davis (7) is strong along the nets for the Lady Mountaineers. Photos by Gary Smart

KM volleyball sweeps BSC title, 
opens playoffs with big victory

Kings Mountain High’s women’s volleyball team polished off an undefeated conference season last week by winning the Big South with a 14-0 record, and then opened play in the NCHSAA 3A tournament on Saturday with an impressive 3-0 victory over North Davidson at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium.
The Lady Mountaineers, 19-2 overall, were scheduled to host East Lincoln last night. A victory would have them hosting the winner of the Central Davidson-Crest game Thursday night. East Lincoln advanced with a 3-0 win over South Point Saturday.
The East and West Regional championships will be played November 2, and the State championship November 6 in Raleigh.
As usual, Kings Mountain got outstanding play from all of their ladies in the opening round 25-5, 25-5, 25-8 win over North Davidson.
Paige Bagwell provided 30 assists, four kills and three service points.
Aaliyah Byers, who recently registered her 1,000th kill over her four- year varsity career, added 17 more to her total while also providing six digs, two blocks and seven service points.
Meile Songaila had her usual strong performance with 10 kills, three serve receptions and two blocks; as did Caroline Barber with 21 service points, three serve receptions and five digs.
In their final regular season game at Crest, the Lady Mountaineers won their 14th straight BSC game over a talented Crest squad, 25-17, 25-23, 25-15. One of the amazing accomplishments of this BSC season was that the Lady Mountaineers did not drop a single set.
Songaila led the way with 14 kills, two assists, three serve receptions, 16 digs, 15 service points and two blocks.
Byers provided 14 kills, four digs, one block and six service points.
Bagwell had five kills, 31 assists, nine digs, three blocks and four service points.
Myracle Davis had five kills, five digs and six blocks.
Barber had five assists, 15 serve receptions, nine digs and six service points.
In JV action, the Lady Mountaineers finished off a 9-2 Big South and 14-3 season with a 25-11, 25-12 victory over Crest.
Sara Kate Bridges had nine service points, 20 assists, three digs and two kills.
Alexa Jones had three service points, nine kills and four digs.
London Brown provided 10 service points, four kills, five serve receptions and three digs.
Addi Peeler had eight service points, eight serve receptions and four digs. 
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Caleb Holland saw his first action since the second game of the season at Asheville and helped lead the Mountaineers to a 51-0 win over Ashbrook Friday in Gastonia.  Photos by Gary Smart 

KM dominates
Ashbrook 51-0 

It took Kings Mountain just four plays – and the first of those was an incomplete pass – to go 55 yards for a touchdown on their first possession and they continued to “roll the Wave” just about all night in a 51-0 Big South victory over Ashbrook Friday night in Gastonia.
The win was the eighth straight for the Mountaineers and puts them in the Big South Conference championship game against the Crest Chargers Friday at 7:30 at KM’s John Gamble Stadium.
After that incompletion, Micah Ward ripped through the Wave twice for 46 yards to set up a nine-yard touchdown run by Zay Smith with only 2:51 gone off the game clock.
On the third play following the KM kickoff, the Mountaineers’ Quay Sanders picked off a pass and returned it 25 yards for a 13-0 lead.
“Our defense played well,” Coach Greg Lloyd said. “They did what they had to do. Ashbrook’s quarterback was out and that hurt them some, but it gave us some momentum coming into the Crest game.”
Although they didn’t seriously threaten to score, the Green Wave rallied somewhat after that and had a couple drives that kept the ball away from the Mountaineers. KM did drive to the Green Wave 17 early in the second quarter but missed a field goal.
After the KM defense  held the Wave to three and out again, Mountaineer fans got a welcomed surprise when running back Caleb Holland, who had not played since suffering an injury in the second game of the year at Asheville, came onto the field. With the Mountaineers starting at their own seven after an Ashbrook punt, Holland ripped through the line for 11 yards and on the very next play quarterback Lamont Littlejohn hit D’Andre Hoyle behind the Ashbrook secondary with an 83-yard catch and run TD. Bryson Brown passed to Curtis Simpson for a two-point conversion and a 21-0 lead.
“It was nice to have Caleb back out there playing,” said Lloyd. “He looked good and quick. All of our backs ran hard and the offensive line continues to improve.”
Taking over with 1:32 remaining in the half, Holland carried three straight times for 28 yards and a first down at the Ashbrook 22 with 48.8 seconds left on the clock. A screen pass to Hoyle got the Mountaineers to the nine, but penalties set them back to the 38. Facing third and goal, Hoyle went deep but was surrounded by two Ashbrook defenders inside the five yard line. The ball actually tipped off both Ashbrook players’ fingers and Hoyle grabbed it for the TD and a 28-0 halftime lead.
A 23-yard reception by Jake Lloyd and several big gains by Holland and Ward had the Mountaineers deep in Ashbrook territory again but they lost a fumble at the 12. Facing third and 17 from their own 10, Ashbrook’s quarterback was scrambling to try to pass and threw the ball out of bounds from his own end zone, resulting in a safety and a 30-0 KM lead.
The Wave had to kick off from the 20, and a Smith return set the Mountaineers up at their own 48. Holland carried twice for 30 yards and Ward twice for 11 for a first and goal at the Ashbrook 12. Three carries by Holland resulted in a touchdown and Jaden Ellis’s PAT ran the score the 37-0.
On the first play following the ensuing kickoff, Peyton Fisher scooped up an Ashbrook fumble and hauled it 65 yards for a touchdown and a 44-0 KM lead at the 5:07 mark of the third quarter, resulting in a running clock.
After another three and out for the Wave, KM took over on its own 38. Jonah Patrick hit Bryson Brown with a 17-yard pass on the final play of the third quarter, and on the third play of the fourth period Patrick hit Fisher with a 19-yarder and a first down at the Wave 24. With 6:20 left in the game, Smith scored on a two-yard run and Ellis booted the PAT for the final 51-0 margin.
Holland finished with 140 yards rushing to lead the KM attack and Ward, who spent most of his time on defense, added 60 yards in just six carries. Overall, the Mountaineers finished with 233 yards rushing and 232 passing.
Hoyle finished with three catches for 133 yards.

Mountaineers go after second championship
of 2021
 when Crest charges into
Gamble Stadium Friday night

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers can do something Friday night that hasn’t been done in 99 years of football at Central and KMHS – winning two conference championships in the same calendar year.
Because of COVID, last fall’s football season was cancelled and moved to late winter and early spring. The Mountaineers went undefeated through the Big South Conference before losing in the second round of the state 3A playoffs.
This game, by far, will be the toughest Kings Mountain has had in the BSC this fall. Like the Mountaineers, the Crest Chargers come to town with a perfect conference record and they haven’t had a close game attaining it.
“They’ve been really impressive this year,” says KM Coach Greg Lloyd. “They’re as good as anybody you’ll see. They have a big running back (Mari Adams). He’s fast and hard to tackle.”
But, he’s just one of many good athletes on the Crest team.
“They use two quarterbacks – one for the ground game and one for passing – and both of them are very dangerous,” Lloyd said.
“And,” he added, “their defense is big, strong and aggressive. I can see why they’re good. Their only losses came early in the season to Shelby and Burns but they have improved tremendously since then.”
Kings Mountain still has some key players on the injured list, including big defensive standout AJ Richardson who sat out last week’s game at Ashbrook and will miss this week’s too after having surgery on his hand.  Lloyd hopes he will be returning soon.
“The key for us this week will be to tackle and get a lot of people to the ball,” Lloyd noted. “We will have to play disciplined football. It would be nice if our offense can stay on the field most of the night.
“And, we need to improve our special teams play,” he added. “This will be our toughest game to date, along with Shelby. We have to play really well on both sides of the ball.”
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KMHS JV Cheerleaders

Kings Mountain’s JV cheerleaders braved the wet weather to cheer the Mountaineers on to victory over South Point during Thursday night at Gamble Stadium.

Photo by Gary Smart
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Kameron Adams carries the mail for Kings Mountain JVs in Thursday’s 7-6 victory over South Point at Gamble Stadium. Photos by Gary Smart

JVs stop Raiders’ two-point try
to remain unbeaten in Big South

Their last two games have been nail-biters, but Kings Mountain High’s JV Mountaineers are still unbeaten in the Big South Conference following Thursday’s 7-6 win over a good South Point team at John Gamble Stadium.
The Mountaineers got by Forestview 6-0 a week earlier on a one-yard sneak by quarterback Kylei Anderson in Gastonia. And they took an early 7-0 lead over South Point Thursday night at John Gamble Stadium but had to stop a two-point conversion try by the Red Raiders for a 7-6 victory.
It was their fifth straight win following an opening-season loss to the Shelby Lions. They travel to Stuart Cramer Thursday for a 7 p.m. kickoff.
The Mountaineers and Red Raiders stopped each other on their first two possessions before the Mountaineers drove 63 yards in 10 plays to score on a 26-yard run around left end by Kameron Adams. Max Thompson’s extra point for a 7-0 lead would eventually be the winner.
Along the way, Adams carried the ball four times for 46 yards. Thomas Fair and Zayvion Wilson also had big gains along the way.
Each team got off some good drives during the night but couldn’t produce any points because of good defensive stops by the other side.
Curtis Simpson’s pass interception gave KM a good scoring opportunity at the South Point 43. The Mountaineers were able to get the ball to the Raider 26 but an incompletion in the end zone gave possession back to the Raiders.
The Raiders were moving late in the second quarter but big defensive plays by CJ Houser and Eli Lipscomb forced them to punt with 29.5 seconds on the clock.
Lipscomb’s tackle for loss ended the Raiders’ first possession of the third period. A drive kept alive by an 18-yard reception by Ethan Guy and strong running by  Fair, Anderson, Adams and Wilson kept the ball in KM’s possession until just 23 seconds remained in the third quarter.
Backed up to their own six yard line, South Point’s Chance Ford rambled 42 yards to get the Raiders out of the hole, and six plays later he went 23 yards right through the middle of the KM defense for a touchdown with 6:08 left in the game. The Raiders handed to him again for a two-point conversion attempt but he was smothered by a host of Mountaineer defenders and the score remained 7-6.
Even though that eventually meant a KM win, the Mountaineers still had some shaky moments. Four plays later South Point recovered a fumble at the 50 but the KM defense stiffened and held them on downs at the KM 34. Anderson carried twice for 11 yards and a first down, allowing the Mountaineers to take a knee three times to run out the clock.

closing in
on BS title

Kings Mountain High’s women’s volleyball team won two more games last week and go into the final week of the regular season with an undefeated record in the Big South Conference.
The Lady Mountaineers will host Ashbrook Thursday in their final regular season home match, and then close out BSC action Tuesday at second place Crest.
Kings Mountain is 11-0 in the conference and 14-2 overall heading into the final week of action.
The Lady Mountaineers polished off Forestview and South Point in straight sets last week.
Against the Lady Jaguars, KM won 25-13, 25-7 and 25-18 after the JVs swept their match 25-21, 25-12.
Against South Point, the varsity won 25-11, 25-8, 25-13 after the JVs captured wins of 25-13, 25-7.
Against Forestview, Meile Songaila had four serve receptions, 11 digs, 16 kills and 11 service points. Paige Bagwell added five kills, 25 assists, five digs and three service points, Mary Grace Hogue three kills, six digs and 15 service points, and Caroline Barber 14 service points, 13 serve receptions and eight digs.
In the JV match, Sara Kate Bridges had 11 service points, 21 assists and seven digs; Alexa Jones 13 kills, three service points, five serve receptions and three digs; London Brown five service points, six kills, eight serve receptions and two digs; and Addi Peeler nine service points, nine digs, and two assists.
Against the South Point varsity, Bagwell had two kills, 42 assists, three digs and four service points; Aaliyah Byers 22 kills, 11 digs, four serve receptions and 12 service points; Songaila 10 kills, nine digs, 11 serve receptions and seven service points, and Myracle Davis five kills and two blocks.
For the JVs, Bridges had 13 service points, 24 assists and eight digs; Peeler nine service points, 13 serve receptions and nine digs; Brooke Hamrick seven kills, eight service points and three digs; and Jones 12 kills, five serve receptions and four digs.
The JVs carried a 6-2 conference and 11-3 overall record into this week’s matches.

Good Cramer
team here
Friday for

Kings Mountain will be having homecoming Friday night at Gamble Stadium, but the Mountaineers can’t afford to let the festivities take their focus off a very dangerous Stuart Cramer team.
Cramer comes to town with two losses, but they were to very good teams and the Storm will come in with the goal of defeating the Mountaineers to strengthen their seeding for the upcoming state playoffs.
Kings Mountain has to have the same mindset, because wins the next three Fridays could give them the Big South Conference championship and guarantee home games for the playoffs.
“Cramer’s going to be just the opposite of what we’ve been seeing this year,” says Mountaineer Coach Greg Lloyd. “They are a passing team with one of the top quarterbacks (Justin Rocquemore) in the state. He is extremely mobile with a very quick release.
“Their overall offense is very good,” Lloyd added, “and their defense has really improved. South Point just beat them by one touchdown and they were down just one going into the fourth quarter against Crest. No doubt, they will be ready. This will be a dog fight.
“With the addition of another round, I expect both of us to be in the playoffs,” he added. “But we don’t want to go in with losses. Their losses were to two very good teams, and they will come in here with a lot of motivation.”
Rocquemore, a junior, has been starting since his freshman year.
Defensively, Lloyd said the Storm is in a 4-2-5 and do a lot of blitzing.
“We definitely have to be ready for that,” he said. “I remember in 2018 they played us a 21-14 ball game. They are very competitive, they’re big and this is going to be a good ballgame.
“Our guys have to be ready. We have a great opportunity in these final three games. Each game is huge. We want to win these next two games and set up a big conference championship game with Crest.”
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Mountaineers’ AJ Richardson (15) is about the lower the boom on South Point quarterback Cam Medlock in Friday’s game in Belmont. Photos by Gary Smart

17-point fourth quarter breaks tie, gives Mountaineers 24-7
win over Red Raiders

For most of three quarters Friday night in Belmont’s Lineberger Stadium, it felt as though old rivals South Point and Kings Mountain may be going to overtime.
A first half touchdown by each team had them tied at 7-all at the break but the Mountaineers used a good ground game, hard-hitting defense and a strong kicking attack to score 17 fourth quarter points and put the Raiders away 24-7.
It was KM’s sixth straight win following an opening season loss to Shelby and kept them tied for first place in the Big South Conference with Crest.
The Mountaineers showed their toughness on the game’s opening drive, moving 80 yards in 16 plays to eat almost eight minutes off the clock and score on a two-yard run of tackle by Robert Kendrick. Jaden Ellis’s extra point made it 7-0. Before the night was over, Kendrick would have 16 carries for 141 yards.
The Raiders answered, going 78 yards on just
three carries by Tyson Riley whose final 56 knotted things up.
The Mountaineers threatened to take the lead midway of the third quarter, driving from their own 38 to the South Point seven behind the running of Kendrick. But, South Point’s Micah Stowe intercepted a pass and returned it to the KM 42 yard line.
“That was our only turnover and it was my fault,” KM Coach Greg Lloyd said. “That was not a good call.”
South Point was able to make it to the KM 23, but a Jake Lloyd interception at the 1:28 mark turned the game in KM’s favor.
With Kendrick and Thomas Feemster taking turns carrying the mail, the Mountaineers stayed on the ground except for the final play of the drive, a 10-yard pass to D’Andre Hoyle. The Mountaineers were flagged 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct after the TD, but Jaden Ellis boomed a 42-yard extra point to put KM up 14-7 with 11:34 left on the clock.
“That was a big extra point,” Lloyd said. “Ellis, our snapper Gabe Short and our holder Bryson Brown all did a great job.”
The Mountaineer defense continued to make big plays. A 15-yard penalty on the Raiders and the first of two interceptions by Peyton Fisher basically put the win in the bag with 6:12 remaining.
Three plays after the pick, Ellis split the uprights with a 43-yard field goal to run the score to 17-7 at the 4:46 mark.
South Point was able to work the ball to the KM 35 and the Mountaineers put the win in the bag on just two plays – Alex Jackson’s sack and Fisher’s 63-yard pick six down the South Point sidelines.
“We came up big in the second half,” Lloyd said. “I thought it was a gusty effort. It was a big win at a tough place to play.
“I thought our defense improved as the game went on, and the offensive line did a great job. We did a good job of taking care of the ball.
“Fisher’s two interceptions were huge. We played really hard.” 
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Kings Mountain Middle School Cheerleaders

Kings Mountain Middle School cheerleaders perform for the home crowd at halftime of last week’s game at John Gamble Stadium.

Photo by Lizzie Ingram
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Aiden Smith

Kings Mountain Middle School quarterback Aiden Smith looks for a receiver in last week’s 12-0 loss to East Lincoln at John Gamble Stadium.

Photo by Gary Smart

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Paige Bagwell dished out 49 assists in last week’s game with Ardrey Kell at the KMHS gym. Photo by Gary Smart

KMHS spikers split with Kell

Kings Mountain High’s volleyball teams split with 4A power Ardrey Kell in non-conference action last week at Donald L. Parker Gymnasium.
The JVs won 25-18, 25-17 and the varsity Lady Mountaineers gave Kell a tough battle before falling 3-2.
Kings Mountain got off to a good start, taking the first set 25-18. The visitors tied it with a 25-20 win before KM came back to take a 2-1 edge with a 26-24 win. Kell rallied with a 25-23 win to tie the series and captured the deciding fifth set 15-9.
Meile Songaila gave a strong overall effort with 12 service points, 12 kills, 42 serve receptions, two blocks and 21 digs.
Aaliyah Byers provided four service points, 29 kills, 17 serve receptions, one block and 26 digs.  
Paige Bagwell had 49 assists, nine service points, four kills, a block and 14 digs and Caroline Barber added 26 serve receptions and 26 digs.
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KMHS Cross Country

Kings Mountain High’s Cross Country team participated in the Wendy’s Invitational at McAlpine Creek Park in Charlotte last weekend. The meet included some of the best teams in the Carolinas, Georgia and Virginia. Parker Key led the Mountaineers with an 18th place time of 17:49. Thalia Kushman led the KM women with a 31st place finish in 22:02. KM’s next meet is October 19 at Ashbrook.


Wed., Oct. 6
4:30 – Middle school football, Kings Mountain at Lincolnton (Varsity begins at 5 p.m.)
6 p.m. – High school soccer, Hunter Huss at KMHS.
Thur., Oct. 7           
4 p.m. – High school volleyball, South Point at Kings Mountain (JV/V DH).
4 p.m. – High school tennis, Crest at Kings Mountain.
7 p.m. – JV football, South Point at Kings Mountain.
Fri., Oct. 8
7:30 – Varsity football, Kings Mountain at South Point
Mon., Oct. 11
4:15 – Middle school softball, Lincolnton at Kings Mountain.
4:15 – Middle school soccer, Lincolnton at Kings Mountain.
6 p.m. –High school soccer, Kings Mountain at North Gaston
Tues., Oct. 12
4 p.m. – Middle school golf, conference championship at West Lincoln
TBA – High school tennis, Big South tournament at North Gaston
3 p.m. – High school golf, Kings Mountain, South Point and Forestview at Cramer Mountain CC.
Wed., Oct.13
4:30 – Middle school football, North Lincoln at Kings Mountain (varsity begins at 5)
6 p.m. –High school soccer, Kings Mountain at Forestview.

KM Middle girls
unbeaten in East

King Mountain Middle School’s softball team carried an unbeaten 9-0 record into a Tri-County Conference home game yesterday against East Lincoln.
A 16-1 win over Lincolnton Thursday clinched the #1 seed from the East Division for the upcoming conference championship playoffs.
Avery Cruise pitched a complete game.
Prior to that victory, the Lady Patriots defeated a good Burns team 10-7 and West Lincoln 2-0.
Against West, which was the Lady Patriots’ toughest game of the year, Maddie Huffman went the distance and struck out 11.
The game was tied going into the sixth inning when Addie Carpenter’s single drove in Ava Broome. Just prior to that, Cruise had the defensive play of the game. Playing third base and with two outs and a runner on second, a rocket  was hit her way and she made the snag and threw to first to end the inning.
Kings Mountain tacked on an insurance run with Huffman scoring on a single to right by Kayla McSwain.
Huffman led the KM plate attack with 3 for 4, including the big double in the bottom of the sixth. Kayla McSwain was 2 for 3 with a walk, Addie Carpenter 2 for 4, and Ava Broome 1 for 2.      

Hall of Fame
induction set for Saturday

The Kings Mountain Sports Hall of Fame dinner and induction ceremony for the 2020 and 2021 honorees will be held Saturday at 6 p.m. at Central United Methodist Church.
Because of Covid, the 2020 induction ceremony was cancelled. All persons attending are strongly encouraged to wear masks and social distance as much as possible.
Tickets are on sale by all members of the Hall of Fame committee and will also be available at the door. No more than 250 people will be allowed inside.
The Class of 2020 includes Diane Williams, Joseph Bell Jr., Jim Medlin, Tim Riddle, Marquiz Williams, David Ray Robinson and the 1998 KMHS men’s track team.
The Class of 2021 includes professional baseball player Will Wilson, long-time KMMS coach Monty Deaton, and former Lady Mountaineer basketball great Trina Hamrick.
Distinguished service awards will be presented to retired KMHS principal Julie Rikard and John Gamble for their long time support of all levels of Kings Mountain sports.

Mountaineers edge good Forestview team,
but biggest test comes Friday at South Point

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers passed their first major test in the Big South Conference Friday night, falling behind early but coming out strong in the second half to defeat the Forestview Jaguars 28-14.
The win leaves the Mountaineers tied for first place in the BSC with Crest, which like Kings Mountain had to come from behind to beat South Point and remain unbeaten in the conference.
“We knew it was going to be a slugfest,” KM head coach Greg Lloyd said about his good friend Chris Medlin’s Forestview eleven. “They are a very good team and put up a hard fight.”
Both offenses had some success early but couldn’t finish off drives. It was the Jaguars’ defense that finally dented the scoreboard with 1:15 left in the first quarter. Their Jacob Neely broke in front of a KM receiver for an interception and 70 yard return for the TD and a 7-0 lead.
Early in the second quarter, KM’s Peyton Fisher recovered a fumble at the Forestview 21, and three plays later Robert Kendrick went 14 yards around right end for a touchdown. Jaden Ellis’ PAT with 9:20 on the clock tied the score.
Forestview responded with its best drive of the night, staying on the ground for 11 of their 12 plays and eating 8:33 off the clock to get inside the KM one. With their big package in the game, the handoff went to a big lineman in the backfield but KM’s defensive line and linebackers stopped him a foot short of the goal line.
“That was very big,” noted Coach Lloyd. “It kept us tied and let us go into the second half with some momentum. It was probably the play of the game.”
The defensive momentum carried over to the second half as it held the Jaguars to three-and-out after the kickoff. KM took possession at its own 47, and after two runs by Thomas Feemster  quarterback Jonah Patrick hit D’Andre Hoyle on a quick slant and he made several good moves around would-be tacklers and turned it into a 42-yard touchdown and a 13-7 Mountaineer lead.
“D’Andre made some really big plays for us,” Lloyd noted. “Jonah made a nice throw and D’Andre went all the way with it. It was a big lift for us.
“Lamont Littlejohn ran the offense well, too,” he added. “Both of our quarterbacks did a good job.”
Kings Mountain’s defense held the Jaguars to three and out at their own 30, and Jake Lloyd blocked Neely’s punt and went untouched down the visitors’ sideline 20 yards for a touchdown with 6:13 on the clock. Robert Kendrick ran a two-point conversion to put the Mountaineers up 21-7. It was Lloyd’s second blocked punt for a touchdown in the past three games.
Forestview was able to answer by faking a punt and throwing 29 yards to Nathaniel Aguilar to the KM 32. They worked the ball to the KM two, and big tackle Ethan Barnett came on to plow through the KM defense for a two-yard TD to cut the margin to 21-14.
The Mountaineers put the win in the bag, going 76 yards in eight plays to score on a one-yard sneak by Littlejohn. Starting out first and 18 following a holding call, Hoyle got things going with a 44-yard catch and run to the Jaguars’ 32.  Other big plays during the drive were a 28-yard reception by Peyton Fisher and a 15-yard run by AJ Richardson to the one.
“Defensively, I thought Richardson had a big game,” Lloyd said. “Fisher played really well and also made a lot of good catches on offense. We did a nice job covering kicks. The blocked punt was big and it turned into a touchdown. We had some big plays in all three phases of the game.”

Things won’t get any easier for Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers when they travel to Belmont Friday night to take on the South Point Red Raiders. In fact, it will be their toughest test yet.
“South Point is very good,” Mountaineer coach Greg Lloyd says of the team that had Crest beaten last Friday before falling by one point in the final minute.
“They played really well and had a great chance to win,” Lloyd said. “They were up 26-13 with nine minutes left and Crest put up a couple of late drives to win.”
This will be Kings Mountain’s first battle with the Red Raiders in several years as they played at the 2A level during the most recent NCHSAA realignment. Regardless of their classification it’s tough to beat them, especially on their home turf.
Even with last week’s loss, there is no doubt the Raiders (5-1) are still a championship threat in the Big South as well as the upcoming state 3A playoffs. With just three regular season games remaining after this week, this game is a big one for both teams.
The Red Raiders are still in a flex bone, or as they call it Red Bone offense. It has been successful for them for many years as they’ve won numerous conference and even some state championships with it.
Their go-to running back is senior Tyson Riley who is averaging 189 yards rushing per game. The team is averaging over 290.
They don’t throw the ball a lot, but their quarterbacks are very accurate and their receivers can catch the ball and go a long way with it. Their leading receiver is 6-5 tight end Jackson Blee who is averaging over 40 yards per reception.
“They have a big offensive line,” Lloyd noted. “They run the fullback (Riley) a lot, and he’s a very hard runner. Defensively, they tackle very well. They’re a typical South Point team that does a lot of things right.
“We have to be solid in all three phases of the game, that’s for sure,” Lloyd said. “They are extra tough at their place so we have to play our best game of the year. Their offense starts with the fullback, but you can’t just concentrate on their ground game. You have to cover all three phases.”

YMCA Golf Tournament raises financial assistance funds

The eleventh Annual Kings Mountain Family YMCA Golf Tournament was held on Friday September 24 at KMCC. Over 100 golfers participated in the annual event.
All proceeds raised go to the Financial Assistance programs. Funds raised help children play soccer, basketball, volleyball, flag football, t-ball, baseball and attend Teen Nights.
Thank you to our Corporate Sponsors – Carolina Powers Partners, Marie and  David Brinkley, First Baptist Church of KM and Eric and Cathy Moore, American Gypsum, Butler’s Tire & Auto, Josh Shelton – Edward Jones, KM Embroidery, Jolly Realty Group, Mill Steel Company, CM Tucker Lumber, Beam Construction, Clark Dietrich, Mario Ware, RUCO, 133 West and Brian & Debbie Osteen.
First place team with a score of 17 under (won on tiebreak):  Tyler Withers, Ty Withers, Dawson Adams, and Jordan Van Dyke.
Second place team with a score of 17 under:  Eric Moore, KG Etters, William Mabry, and Eric Stacy.
Third place team with a score of 16 under: Jeff Johnson, Chip Sloan, Lanny Wright, and Jason Mills.
Longest driver winners on Hole 2: Men – Matt Hunsinger; Women’s – Anne Brooks.
Longest drive Winner on Hole 11: Men’s - Kameron Kerr; Women’s – Dana Foy; Seniors – William Mabry.
Closet to pin winners : Hole 5 – Eric Stacy;  Hole 8 – Jimmy Parker; Hole 12 – Kameron Kerr;  Hole 16 – Harry Diehl; Hole 17 - KG Etters.

‘Tennis loses
to Forestview,
Stuart Cramer here Thursday

After numerous postponements and cancellations because of COVID quarantines and rain, Kings Mountain High’s women’s tennis team finally got its season started last week.
The Lady Mountaineers gave one of the pre-season favorites, Forestview, a tough match but the Lady Jaguars finally prevailed 5-4.
Kings Mountain was scheduled to make up a rained out game against Hunter Huss on Monday and were to go to South Point for a regularly-scheduled game Tuesday.
The Lady Mountaineers will be at home Thursday against Stuart Cramer.
Forestview wrapped up the victory with wins in four of the six singles matches and the #1 doubles matches.
Rennie Liu (F) d. Hannah McCall 6-0, 6-0; Maggie Lu (F) d. Katelyn Fleming 6-0, 6-2; Jessica Normik (F) d. Railey Bolt 6-0, 6-0; Sarah Younan (F) d. Hailey McCall 6-1, 6-4; Melissa Brooks (KM) d. Jamie Lacourse (F) 7-5, 5-7, 10-5; Katie Murray (KM) d. Kayleen Echeverry (F) 6-2, 6-2.
Lu-Normik (F) d. Hannah McCall-Hailey McCall 8-1; Katelyn Fleming-Railey Bolt (KM) d. Friday-Craig 8-4; Katie Murray-Kalin Brooks (KM) d. Jenkins-Parker 8-2.

Lady Chargers
win golf match

Kings Mountain High’s Kaliyah Watson shot a 53 in a Big South Conference golf match last week at Riverbed.
The host Crest ladies won with a 153 score, followed by Stuart Cramer 174, Ashbrook 198 and Forestview 205.
Allie MacArthur of Crest was the individual medalist with a 45.

Hall of Fame
set October 9

The 34th annual Kings Mountain Sports Hall of Fame dinner and induction ceremony will be held Sat., Oct. 9 at 6 p.m. at Central United Methodist Church.
Tickets are on sale by members of the Hall of Fame committee and at the door. They are $15 each.
All persons attending the ceremony are strongly encouraged to wear masks and social distance as much as possible.
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Parker Key, left, won last week’s Cleveland County cross country meet. Thelma Kushman, center, was second in the girls meet and Isaiah Watts was third for the KM men.

Key, Mountaineers
County XC champs

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers and their top runner Parker Key were winners in last week’s Cleveland County Schools Cross Country championship at Shelby High School.
The Kings Mountain women finished second, just eight points behind the host Shelby ladies.
Key ran the course in 18:03 to lead the Mountaineers to victory. Isaiah Watts finished third, closely followed by Hunter Cruise in fourth. Kohen Johnson was seventh, Nic Horn ninth, and Marty Lovington 10th.
Nathan Inthavong ran 11th, and Elliot Habel 16th.
Shelby’s Ally Hollifield was the individual champion in the girls’ event. Thelma Kushman of Kings Mountain finished second with a personal best time of 21:35. Other top runners for the Lady Mountaineers were Divinity Ervin in fifth place, Brooke Waseman seventh, Nicole Poston 10th and Sindy Ulloa 12th. 

Forestview here
Friday to battle
for share of first

Kings Mountain’s Mountaineers will face their toughest test since their opening game with Shelby when Forestview’s Jaguars come to John Gamble Stadium Friday for a 7:30 p.m. Big South Conference game.
Both teams go into the contest with unbeaten 2-0 records in the Big South. With Crest and South Point also unbeaten in the BSC at this point and Stuart Cramer and Gastonia Ashbrook definite threats to anyone, Friday’s contest could have playoff implications.
Forestview has shown tremendous improvement since dropping its first two games to Burns 8-6 and East Lincoln 31-17. They edged perennial Western power Freedom 13-7 in their final non-conference bout before opening Big South play with a 43-30 win over North Gaston and shutting out a talented Ashbrook eleven last week, 24-0.
A very experienced team with 15 seniors and 13 juniors – many of whom have started since their freshman year - the Jaguars are strong on both offense and defense and, as usual, have a tremendous kicking game. Their defense has shown tremendous improvement each week and is averaging over two sacks per game.
Their senior quarterback, Austin Parker, is 6-4 and completing a high percentage of his passes.
Senior running back Camury Reid is a strong running and receiving threat with over 300 yards in both categories. Another top receiver is junior Nathan Aguilar who is averaging over 17 yards per catch.
“Forestview is a very good team,” said Mountaineer coach Greg Lloyd. “I think you could put us, Crest,  South Point and Forestview
 in a hat and all have a chance to win the conference. They have a lot of seniors. I’m sure they are hungry and ready to play their best game against us.”
This will be the 17th meeting between Lloyd and Forestview Coach Chris Medlin since the two left East Gaston in 2007 to take their current positions. They’ve faced each other not just in conference play, but also in state playoff games.
“They lost a couple games early but they are improving each week,” Lloyd noted. “They have one of the strongest defenses and one of the best running games in the area. They have a lot of seniors and I’m sure they are hungry and ready to play their best game against us.”
 “This is going to be the toughest test we’ve had since the Shelby game,” Lloyd noted. “They have size and one of the strongest teams we’ve seen. This is going to be a big test, for sure.”
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Aaliyah Byers makes a powerful kill in last week’s sweep of Crest at Parker Gym. See more photos on 2B. Photo by Gary Smart

KM spikers blank Crest
to take sole lead in BSC

Kings Mountain High’s women’s volleyball team took over sole possession of first place in the Big South 3A Conference Thursday at Parker Gym with a 3-0 victory over Crest.
The two teams went into the final game of the first round tied for the lead. The Lady Chargers gave the Lady Mountaineers a tough run in the first set, losing by just 25-22, but KM dominated after that with wins of 25-13 and 25-15.
Aaliyah Byers led the way for the Lady Mountaineers with 19 kills, 10 service points and six serve receptions. Meile Songaila had 11 kills, two service points and eight serve receptions. Paige Bagwell added two kills, 35 assists and nine service points and Caroline Barber had 19 serve receptions, nine digs and three service points.
Kings Mountain’s JVs were also victorious, 25-10, 25-12.
Sara Kate Bridges had 14 assists, two kills, four digs and four service points. Alexa Jones had eight kills, three digs and 12 service points. London Brown had four kills, a block, five digs and four service points and Addi Peeler had 14 service points, five digs and eight serve receptions.
Kings Mountain, 10-1 overall, was scheduled to host a good Ardrey Kell team in a non-conference game Monday and Hunter Huss in a Big South game Tuesday. Then, the Lady Mountaineers will hit the road for BSC games at North Gaston on September 30 and Forestview October 5. Their next home game will be October 7 against South Point.