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Firebirds, Ladybirds take 2nd in championship

Gonzalez hat trick sparks Ladybirds by Red Rams in OT

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ROCKY MOUNT — Both Southern Nash High track teams walked away with runner-up finishes at Monday’s Nash County Championships, contested at Nash Central.

The Firebirds, with 92.5 points, finished 7.5 points behind county champion Northern Nash. Rocky Mount was third at 62, followed by host Nash Central at 37.5.

Darius Edmundson won two individual titles and contributed to another, winning the 100-meter dash and long jump. He teamed with Matt Foster, Jalen McClaston and D.J. Johnson to claim the 4x100-meter relay.

Lamont Williams captured the shot put to highlight Southern Nash performances in the field.

In the girls competition, Tristian Foster won the 100 and 300-meter events on her way to Track Most Valuable Performer honors.

Foster had a hand in both the 4x100 and 4x200 relays, in which the Ladybirds won both behind the efforts of Jenira Mckoy, Symia McCalston, Krystal Taybron and Foster.

Rayna Bailey captured first place in the shot put.

Nef Gonzalez scored three goals, including one in the first overtime that proved to be the game-winner in host Southern Nash’s 3-2 varsity girls soccer win against 3-A Big East Conference foe Franklinton on Friday afternoon.

The win ended a three-game skid for the Ladybirds, who improved to 7-6 overall and 2-4 in Big East play. The Red Rams departed 5-6 and 1-4, respectively.

Gonzalez scored a goal early in each half to put Southern Nash in front 2-0. However, Franklinton scored on a penalty kick and then got the equalizer late. Gonzalez’s go-ahead goal came with 10 seconds remaining in the first overtime.

Ladybirds head coach Robbie Kennedy praised the play of junior Iris Radilla and freshman Kaylyn Younes.

Undefeated Firebirds tie for Big East title

The undefeated Southern Nash High boys tennis team clinched no worse than a tie for the 3-A Big East Conference championship with a 9-0 conquest of host Hunt on Thursday.

The Firebirds, in defeating Hunt for the second time, vaulted to 8-0 in the conference with two matches remaining and to 14-0 overall. The Warriors dropped to 2-5 and 5-5, respectively.

Southern Nash claimed a pair of third-set tiebreakers in sweeping the singles.

At No. 3, Firebirds junior Hector Perez turned back Hunt senior Jae Jm Lee, 6-2, 2-6, (10-5) and, at No 5, junior Adolfo Gonzalez bested Hunt senior Samuel Candelario Torres 0-6, 6-4, (10-5).

Prevailing in straight sets were senior Parker Strickland at No. 1, senior Dylan Alligood at No. 2, senior David Vasquez at No. 4 and junior Michael Hernandez at No. 6.

Firebirds lose 9-hole match to Knights

Southern Nash and Northern Nash, 3-A Big East Conference rivals, switched from stroke competition to match play for a nine-hole golf match April 3, with Southern Nash dropping a 6-1 decision.

Senior Thomas Jeffreys emerged the only Firebirds victor by a 3 and 2 margin.

Losing 1-up were Carson Winstead, Levy Brantley and Jonathan Daniels, while Jubie Moss, Dontavius Kingsberry-Evans and Jackson Wall each dropped 2 and 1 outcomes to Knights opponents.

Ladybirds escape Fike 2-1

A two-out double by Ricki Bartley scored Anna Strickland with the go-ahead run in the top of the sixth inning and Southern Nash held on to win 2-1 at Fike on April 3, as the Ladybirds won their seventh straight and remained unbeaten in 3-A Big East Conference varsity softball.

Southern Nash (10-2, 5-0 Big East) got a three-hitter from junior starting pitcher Carrigan Ewers, who struck out 11 in improving 6-2. Ewers also cracked a solo home run in the sixth to tie the game after Fike (6-5, 3-2 Big East) had taken a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth.

Strickland singled with two outs and scooted home on Bartley’s double. The Ladybirds still needed a “great catch” by freshman center fielder Alexa Daniel to seal the win as Fike had the tying run on base in the bottom of the seventh.

Taylor Bailey was 2 for 4 with a triple, while Ewers and Strickland also had two hits each for Southern Nash. No individual information was provided for Fike.

Fike’s second-half surge keys 3-1 Ladybirds loss

The visiting Fike High varsity girls soccer team climbed into a tie for second place with Rocky Mount in the 3-A Big East Conference with a 3-1 victory against Southern Nash on April 3.

The Lady Golden Demons generated energy after a scoreless first half to improve to 3-1 in the Big East and to 4-6-1 overall. Southern Nash, a loser to Fike for the second time this season, fell to 1-4 and 6-6, respectively.

The match was knotted at 1-1 with less than 24 minutes remaining when freshman Hannah Mosley finished a through ball from sophomore Reece Nelson.

With just under nine minutes left, the Lady Demons added insurance when freshman Akari Nakaya won a one-on-one duel with the Ladybirds goalkeeper. Mosley had the assist.

Fike opened the scoring some five minutes into the second half when sophomore Kendall Harris played the ball into the box — where junior Meredith Murphy one-touched and drilled in a left-footed shot.

Southern Nash drew even some four minutes later. A handball-in-the-box infraction created a penalty kick opportunity that Nef Gonzalez converted.

Fike senior goalkeeper Jah’Asia Pernell later stopped an excellent shot from Southern Nash’s Kaylyn Younes.

“We have always struggled with early games,” Fike head coach Toni Varacchi remarked in reference to the afternoon outing. “We played a better second half — as usual. I like the result but our effort and intensity have been lacking.”

Southern Nash wins Big East tri-meet

The Southern Nash High girls track team continued its strong performances against 3-A Big East Conference opposition by besting Hunt and host Fike in a tri-meet April 3.

Posting four personal records along the way, the Ladybirds amassed 74 points, followed by Hunt with 37 and Fike with 33.

Tristian Foster captured the 100- and 300-meter hurdles, notching a personal record of 49.96 seconds in the 300 hurdles.

Registering personal bests and winning their respective events were Avery Britt in the 110 hurdles, Samantha Rodriguez in the 3,200 run and the 4x100 relay of Takeerah Wilson, Britt, Shearin and Krystal Taybron.

Other Ladybirds registering first places were Rayna Bailey in the shot put, Shearin in the 800, Taylor Gardner in the pole vault and Jenira Mckoy in the 200.

Firebirds lose 9-hole match to Knights

Southern Nash and Northern Nash, 3-A Big East Conference rivals, switched from stroke competition to match play for a nine-hole golf match April 3, with Southern Nash dropping a 6-1 decision.

Senior Thomas Jeffreys emerged the only Firebirds victor by a 3 and 2 margin.

Losing 1-up were Carson Winstead, Levy Brantley and Jonathan Daniels, while Jubie Moss, Dontavius Kingsberry-Evans and Jackson Wall each dropped 2 and 1 outcomes to Knights opponents.

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