Area Sports: UNC’s Padgett heads to Cape Cod Baseball League

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 27, 2024

Staff report

Cameron Padgett (East Rowan, UNC) will pitch for the Bourne Braves in the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League this summer.

Padgett has pitched two seasons for the Tar Heels and had a successful relief outing against national champ Tennessee in the College World Series.

That makes four Rowan players in the Cape, the top summer league for college players.

• Kane Kepley (South Rowan, Liberty) is doing well for the Hyannis Harbor Hawks. Kepley is batting a modest .250 after nine games, but his on-base percentage is .450.

Kepley makes contact at an elite level and has 10 walks and only five strikeouts.

• Pitchers Chance Mako (East Rowan, N.C. State) and Haiden Leffew (South Rowan, Wake Forest) are with the Harwich Mariners.

Mako, a 19-year-old right-hander, is 1-0 and has allowed one hit in four innings. Leffew, a 19-year-old lefty, is 0-1 but he has six strikeouts in five innings.


Nathan Chrismon (South Rowan, East Carolina) has been a standout in the Coastal Plain League, one of the top summer collegiate leagues.

Chrismon, a 20-year-old shortstop, plays for the High-Point Thomasville team and is batting .317 with three homers and 12 RBIs in 11 games.

Chrismon’s South Rowan teammate Ty Hubbard (Catawba). Hubbard is batting .313 in six games.

• Bo Rusher (Salisbury, Gardner-Webb, Catawba) is playing for the Martinsville team in the CPL. Rusher, a 23-year-old catcher, has four RBIs and six walks in five games.

• Dylan Driver (Carson, Catawba) has been healing a leg, but will be joining the Asheboro team in the CPL.


Catawba’s Cole Hales (Carson) and Sam Hunter are playing for Waynesboro in the Valley League.

Hunter batting .368 in his first four games with three doubles and three steals. Hales is hitting and pitching for Wayensboro.


The Statesville Owls, who have a number of local players, won their 12th in a row on Wednesday.

Blake Hill (East Rowan, Catawba) had a double and drove in a run.

The Owls honored Daniel Sell, the firefighter who was killed in an accident recently.

Sell played for West Rowan, Rowan County American Legion and the Owls.


Ryan Street (Carson, Catawba) plans to make his return from Tommy John surgery on July 1.


Vance Honeycutt

Stacks of All-America honors continue to roll in for Vance Honeycutt (Salisbury, UNC).

Honeycutt also made the all-tournament team for the College World Series.

Honeycutt’s three-year UNC career produced amazing numbers including 65 homers, 76 steals, 170 RBIs, 126 walks and 205 runs.

The 21-year-old outfielder is the consensus best power/speed player for the MLB draft (July 14-16) as well as the best defensive center fielder. He’s about as fast as anyone and hits the ball as hard as anyone in the draft. He’s also proven to be a clutch hitter, especially in UNC’s recent run, and there are zero character issues.

Honeycutt may have the best physical tools of anyone in the draft and is a certain first-round pick. Still most mock drafts and expert projections have him going 15th to 20th in the draft. The red flag for some teams is his strikeout rate — 26 percent of his plate appearances — for his college career. Other teams aren’t too worried about the strikeouts because the contact he makes is of the highest quality.



Former Livingstone sprinter Quanera Hayes will be part of Team USA track and field in Paris.

Hayes finished seventh in the 400 meters in the Tokyo Olympics in 2021.

Hayes placed fifth in the 400 in the recent U.S. Olympic Trials in Oregon and met the Olympic qualifying standard.

The 32-year-old mother of two isn’t quite as fast now as she was in 2021, but she still can fly, and you could see her on the 4×400 relay team.

• Todd DeSorbo (Salisbury) has established himself as the nation’s top women’s swim coach. He’s guided Virginia to four straight collegiate national championships, and the Salisbury-Rowan Hall of Famer will  be directing Team USA’s effort in Paris. His Virginia swimmers are expected to be leaders for the American squad.


College baseball

No surprise, but Jim Gantt has been named Southeast Regional Coach of the Year for the fourth time.

“The Division II All-Americans who were in Cary are in the portal right now,” Gantt said. “We didn’t have the All-Americans, just a bunch of guys who played hard and played for each other. It’s not hard to coach guys like that. We won a lot of games, and any recognition I get is because of the work they put in.”


New AD

South Rowan announced the hire of Chris Krieg as its new athletic director.

Krieg replaces Angie Chrismon, who served with distinction for many years, carrying on the legacy of her father, Larry Deal.

Krieg hasn’t been on the staff at South, but but has extensive experience as a football coach and in NASCAR.

His daughter, Danica, is one of the standout athletes at South.


HS softball

Six local players were named to the All-State team by the NC Coaches Association on Wednesday — Salisbury’s Ashley Yang and Katie Peeler; West Rowan’s Emma Clarke and Arabelle Shulenburger; South Rowan’s Kynlee Dextraze, and A.L. Brown’s Myla McNeely were honored.

They were named to all-district teams before being named All-State.

South’s Lexie Ritchie, Leisha Carter and Eva Shue; Carson’s Evie White; A.L. Brown’s Mady Baker, Marynda Blackwelder and Karma Little, and West Rowan’s Reese Poole and EA Nance also made all-district teams.



Allison Lee Burns (Salisbury) director of Open Championships for the U.S. Golf Association was at a Milwaukee Brewers game this week to kick off  promotion of the 2025 U.S. Women’s Open at Erin Hills next May.


Match play for the Rowan Masters begins on Friday and will continue through Sunday at Warrior.


Jackson Sparger (Salisbury) has set his sights on being a college golfer and is making a jump.

Sparger shot 73 for second place overall in a tournament at Salem Glen in Clemmons.


Frank Adams shot 46 for nine holes to win his age group in the event at Salem Glen.

The grandson of Ed Dupree celebrated with Chick-fil-A and ice cream. Frank’s mom, Allison Dupree Adams, handled caddying duties.


Ryan and Cam Honeycutt shot 31 for nine holes to win the Country Club of Salisbury’s Parent-Child event.

Young Cam shot 69 (one bogey) at Red Bridge in Locust recently to qualify for regional action.


GARS members played at Corbin Hills this week.

Low ‘A’ Flight player was Larry Petrea with a net of 60.82.

Low ‘B’ Flight player was Ted Weant with a net of 58.81.

Low ‘C’ Flight player was John Cress with a net of 60.07.

Low ‘D’ Flight player was John Mitchell with a net of 59.20.

Petrea shot a 3-under 69 to win low gross, while Weant had low net.

Joe Dunn was the Super Senior winner with a net of 60.3.

Five members shot their age or better.

Petrea, 72, shot a 69. Weant, 74, shot a 74. Wayne Kluttz, 80, shot an 80. Dunn, 80, shot an 80.

Bobby Clark, 84, shot an 80.

Six eagles were made on the par-5 No 5 hole. They were made by Andy Griffin, Bobby Bryant, Cliff Despain, Dickie Peeler, Edgar Osborne  and

Ron Ervin.


In a Captain’s Choice event at McCanless, Crystal Clement, Larry Clifton, Mike Billings and Ron Irby took  first place.

 Claude Honeycutt and David and Azalee Huneycutt took second.
Mike Kluttz had closest to the pin, while Clifton had the longest putt.

Salisbury coaches

Salisbury announced a number of coaching changes and additions.

Jason Moore will be the new offensive coordinator for the football team.

Milton Griffith returns as tennis coach after Roarke Burton handled those duties last school year. Burton is headed to medical school.

Jahaun Phillips was named as the girls wrestling coach.

Hanson Saryee, who has been girls track coach, will add cross country duties.