By Bria Irizarry
Wednesday morning, Durham Academy Athletics celebrated four senior student-athletes who have committed to compete in college. Baylor Goldthwaite will play soccer at Wake Forest University; Julianna Hallyburton (who was the state champion in the pole vault in spring 2021) will compete in track and field at Colgate University; Katie Kerman will play soccer at Davidson College; and Kennedy Yon will play soccer at Florida International University.
Family, friends, teachers and administrators gathered on the Upper School quad to watch the girls sign their National Letters of Intent, donning the T-shirts and colors of their future institutions.
Durham Academy Director of Athletics Andy Pogach stood before the crowd and introduced each of the student-athletes.
“This is a really, really cool accomplishment for these girls,” he said. “It’s also really special that these four have a combined 47 years at Durham Academy, including three from the Preschool.”
Baylor Goldthwaite — Soccer at Wake Forest University
Julianna Hallyburton — Track and Field at Colgate University
Katie Kerman — Soccer at Davidson College
Kennedy Yon — Soccer at Florida International University
As winter approaches, Durham Academy athletics is looking forward to the boys and girls basketball seasons as well as the swim season. Both DA basketball teams open their seasons tonight on the road against Grace Christian.
DA varsity boys basketball is heading into the season with two senior leaders in Alex Dunk and Charlie Rand, and new head coach Adam Cluff at the helm of the program. Cluff, who is also an Upper School English teacher, was named head coach in August and has jumped right in to preparing his team for the 2021–2022 season.
The Cavaliers, who went 12–8 overall and 6–3 in conference in 2020–2021, have made a pact to support one another on and off the court as they transition to a new coach and to come together as a team to commit to a supportive playing environment.
“During our first week and a half of practice, our team has been building an exciting, competitive spirit and cohesion,” Cluff said. “We have committed that we ‘row the boat,’ which we define as having already decided, no matter what happens, to keep moving forward in a positive direction.”
The Cavs lost their top two scorers from last season — seniors Toby Harris and Cole Sinclair — but will look to take advantage of experienced returners Dunk and Rand along with juniors Bryson Tupper and Adam Roeder. The Cavs also welcome two new faces to the squad in juniors Jake Chisholm and Jack Condray, who are new to Durham Academy this year.
“We know our first two games, opening on the road tonight followed by our home opener on a Friday night, will be fun opportunities to compete and begin to discover our identity,” Cluff added. “We especially look forward to having fans back in the stands.”
DA varsity girls basketball is looking forward to starting the season strong as it returns five players from last year's squad that went 12–8 overall and 8–3 in conference. Among the Cavs’ returners are last season’s leading scorers, ninth-grader McKenzie Graves and junior Kendall Harris. The girls team will be led by seniors Brooke Epstein and Molly Hunter, and welcomes ninth-grader Rashyia Williams, who is new to DA this year.
Girls varsity head coach Nikki Graves is excited to build on the team’s momentum from last year.
“Our team chemistry is strong this year,” Graves said. “The girls get along well on and off the court and we hope to compete at a high level to show that DA girls basketball is going to be exciting to watch this season.”
In order to catch our teams in action this season, fans must reserve tickets for basketball games at our Tickets Website: www.da.org/athletics/tickets.
Keeping Up with the Cavs
As always, you can keep up with the Cavs on Durham Academy’s website and the Durham Academy App (available on the Apple App Store).
- For a list of all teams, their schedules and directions to games, visit www.da.org/teams.
- Click on an individual team to subscribe to automatic alerts about athletics results, postponements and cancellations, calendar and athletic event reminders. You can also import team schedules into your electronic calendars.
- All information about the daily athletics schedule is also available on DA’s Athletics Hotline: 919-489-2534 (ext. 5).
The DA App: Schedules and Results
- The DA App allows you to keep up with athletics wherever you are. You can download the app from iTunes at http://bit.ly/DACavaliers. The DA App pulls athletics content directly from the DA website and delivers it to iOS-based devices including iPhone and iPad.
- The Athletics portion of the DA App (after launching, click Menu, then click Athletics to open) features results of recent games, a list of upcoming contests and team records.