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Salisbury girls, East boys have thirst for first

Staff report

East Rowan’s boys are in first place.

Salisbury’s girls are trying to get there.

Both teams are scheduled to participate in critical games over the next two days, and the outcomes will impact the top of the CPC and CCC basketball standings.

Tonight, second-place Salisbury (15-2, 5-1 CCC) will play host to first-place East Davidson (18-0, 6-0). Saturday, first-place East (16-1, 6-0 CPC) will visit second-place R.J. Reynolds (9-8, 5-1) in Winston-Salem.

Each second-place squad will have a chance to avenge a loss to the league leader.

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East Davidson’s girls beat Salisbury 49-47 on Dec. 12 in Thomasville.

It was the first CCC game of the year — and the best. Kristyn Holt’s last-second shot — her only bucket of the game — won it for the Golden Eagles. East Davidson coach Terry Allmon was almost as subdued as losing coach Jennifer Shoaf because he realized his team had only landed the first punch in a boxing match that could last four rounds. This rivalry could extend to the CCC tournament championship game and the Western Regional.

East Davidson, the unanimous No. 1 in the latest NCPreps.com 2A poll, will come into the Hornets’ gym with a chance to put a stranglehold on the CCC title.

Allmon has special players in senior point guard Anna Dellapenta and sophomore post player Anna Freeman. Freeman battered the Hornets for 26 points, 13 rebounds and nine blocks in the first meeting.

Salisbury has won 12 straight games since its loss to East Davidson and is likely underrated at No. 8 in the NCPreps.com poll. The Hornets have won or shared three straight regular-season CCC titles. They can win if they get off to a stronger start — they dug an 11-2 hole in Thomasville.

North Iredell is at West Rowan in the other key girls game. The teams are part of a three-way tie for third place in the NPC and haven’t met. West (10-6, 4-3) has won five of its last six games.

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East Rowan’s boys, ranked sixth in 4A, won the CPC tournament last season and are taking aim at their first regular-season conference crown since 1988.

East beat RJR 76-70 in Granite Quarry.

The Mustangs have won 13 straight games, the third-longest streak in school history. The 1974-75 team won 16 in a row.

West Rowan’s boys (14-2, 7-0 NPC) are home against North Iredell tonight. The Falcons lead the NPC pack by two games.

Lexington is at North Rowan. Both boys teams are involved in a four-way tie for first place in the CCC. The Cavaliers have won four straight after an 0-11 start.

Carson’s boys have a shot at their first NPC win at Statesville tonight. Both teams are 0-7 in the league.

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