• 82°

Prep Basketball: Sanders sizzles for North boys

By Mike London

mike.london@salisburypost.com

SPENCER — The scouting report Lake Norman Charter had obtained on North Rowan’s boys basketball team was a good one.
The Knights packed it back in a zone and dared the Cavaliers to prove they could make outside shots.
So North senior Jalen Sanders did. He drilled three 3-pointers in a row in the momentum-turning second quarter, and the Cavaliers were on their way to Friday’s 61-49 victory.
“We hit only two 3-pointers in our first two games, so it wasn’t a surprise that they pulled back in a zone,” North coach Andrew Mitchell said. “I told our guys there will be games where we’ll have to show a lot of patience, but this was a night where we needed to take our shots and shoot with a lot of confidence. Jalen is a special player and a special leader. He shot the ball well.”
It was a nice win for North (3-0), which is not at full strength yet. Lake Norman Charter is a dangerous team, with a host of rangy athletes and a 6-foot-6 junior post man (Grayson Hickert, 17 points) who can rebound and shoot.
“They have seven seniors, and they are going to be very good,” Mitchell said. “I’m glad we got them in their first game of the season. They’ll be tough a week from now and they could make a playoff run.”
While Mitchell wanted his team to be aggressive on offense, he preached patient defense.
“You gamble against Lake Norman Charter and you’re going to give up a lot of drives and open 3-point looks,” Mitchell said. “I thought we were very patient. They didn’t get many open 3s.”
When Hickert scored on a stickback early in the second quarter, Lake Norman Charter led 17-13, but that was where the visitors peaked. Sanders had a world-class second quarter, accounting for all 15 North points with three made 3-pointers and three assists on 2-point baskets. Joseph Scott had two finishes off Sanders’ dishes, while Alonzo Sirleaf had a beauty on a fastbreak.
Sanders propelled North to a 28-19 halftime lead.
When Sanders and Josh Handy knocked down back-to-back 3s early in the second half, they gave the Cavaliers a secure 36-22 lead. North would go on to lead by as many as 21 points before LNC battled back some in the final quarter.
North’s goal was to hold Lake Norman Charter under 45 points, but the visitors made 11 free throws in the fourth quarter to foil that plan.
On the play of the night, Scott and Handy went up for a volleyball-like combination block to erase a Lake Norman Charter drive.
“There was a lot of good defense played, and defense is what I’m focused on and what this team is focused on,” said Scott, who scored 14 points. “Defense and sharing the ball wins games. We did those things well.”
North won 48-38 at Charlotte Harding on Wednesday in a game that Mitchell said was a struggle. Scott scored 16, while Sanders was held to 13.
“Fortunately, we’d scrimmaged with Winston-Salem Prep and Vance, so we were prepared,” Mitchell said. “When you play those Charlotte teams, it’s physical. It was almost like a fight.”

North Rowan 61, Lake Norman Charter 49
LAKE NORMAN CHARTER (49) — Hickert 17, Worthy 10, Hancock 9, Reed 5, Gonzalez 5, Cracknell 3, Queen, Fabian.
NORTH ROWAN (61) — Sanders 24, Scott 14, Handy 9, Haley 6, Sirleaf 5, Alexander 2, Clemons 1, Cooke, Hooper, Cuthbertson, Miller
LN Charter 13 6 12 18 — 49
North Rowan 13 15 18 15 — 61

Comments

Crime

Blotter: April 14

Elections

Former North Carolina Gov. McCrory enters US Senate race

Crime

Salisbury woman arrested in Myrtle Beach for abducting child

Health

County updates health director job description, will advertise for position

High School

High school tennis: East beats Carson, still hopes to share NPC title

Elections

Board of Elections to purchase upgraded voting equipment using federal grant

Kannapolis

Kyle Seager drives in winning run in first game as Mariners split doubleheader with Orioles

Local

City exhausts this year’s funds for Innes Street Improvements, Municipal Services District grant programs

Landis

Landis adopts amendments to Zoning Ordinance related to signs, Planning Board terms

Nation/World

Cop, police chief resign 2 days after Black motorist’s death

Nation/World

Expert says cop was justified in pinning down George Floyd

Crime

Blotter: April 13

Coronavirus

County switches vaccines for Livingstone clinic after federal, state guidance

Coronavirus

US recommends ‘pause’ for J&J vaccine over clot reports

Education

Superintendent talks first 100 days, dives into district data

Business

‘It was an answer to a call:’ TenderHearted Home Care celebrates 10 years of providing care at home

News

Political Notebook: Local polls find increasing number of North Carolinians want COVID-19 vaccine

News

Trial begins on challenge to latest NC voter ID law

Local

Burch, Fisher, Marsh honored as 2021 recipients of Elizabeth Duncan Koontz Humanitarian Award

Landis

Landis board talks revenues, budget planning, department updates

College

College baseball: Catawba rolls 7-1 and 24-1

Nation/World

Student fires at officers at Tennessee school, is killed

Nation/World

Police: Minnesota officer meant to draw Taser, not handgun

Crime

Man receives consecutive prison sentences for sex offenses