We are just four days away from the start of winter sports. However, before the basketballs bounce in Kirby Gym and the swimmers dive into the Campus Hills pool, two varsity Cavalier fall teams will be competing for state championships this weekend. First are our cross-country teams, who will compete Friday morning in the NCISAA championship meet at Wake Med Park. Then, on Saturday, the 19-2 girls tennis team looks to win the program’s first state championship as they battle rival Cary Academy at Salem Academy in Winston-Salem. This week’s Cavs Corner previews these two events and looks back on the endings of our other fall sports teams’ seasons.
Week in Review
The boys cross-country team heads into Friday’s state meet on a high note after winning last week’s TISAC meet in Cary. Cary Academy had the first two runners cross the finish line, but then DA took the next five positions to take first place with 25 team points, just five ahead of second-place CA. Neil Mosca (third place, 16:40), Ethan Goldman (fourth place, 16:46), Mark Alkins (fifth place, 16:46), Mac Hays (sixth place, 16:48) and Jack Anderson (seventh place, 16:50) all earned All-Conference recognition. Durham Academy, Cary Academy and Providence Day will battle it out in the state meet as the Cavs race for a state title on Friday.
On the girls’ side, eighth-grader Stella Stringer crossed the finish line first to win the TISAC meet. Her 19:25 time was 1.5 seconds faster than the top runner from Ravenscroft. The girls team finished tied for second with the Ravens at 62 points, 32 points behind conference champ Cary Academy. Ninth-grader Anna Catherine Wilson (10th place, 20:42), sophomore Fran Pacchiana (12th place, 21:08) and senior Cami Simpson (15th place, 21:26) all finished in the top 15.
The girls tennis team will make the program’s first-ever appearance in the state championship match as they battle conference rival Cary Academy on Saturday afternoon at Salem Academy in Winston-Salem. The 19-2 Cavs have run through the state tournament with matching 5-0 home wins over Wesleyan Christian and Greensboro Day. In Friday’s win over Wesleyan, the big battle was at first doubles, where sophomores Alexis Galloway and Madeline Towning tried to topple the Trojans’ very strong No. 1 team. The Cavs duo prevailed 8-4, and along with 8-0 sweeps at 2nd and 3rd doubles, the Cavs led 3-0 heading into the singles matches. Towning (6-0, 6-0 on court 2) and Galloway (6-1, 6-1 on court 3) were the two Cavs to finish as DA advanced to host the state semifinal match.
In Tuesday’s 5-0 win over Greensboro Day, it was once again doubles that lifted the Cavs to a 3-0 start. Galloway and Towning won 8-2 over a team that had handed them their only loss earlier in the year. Joy Callwood and Renee George won 8-1 on court 2 and Nicole Riepl and Julia King took an 8-0 win on court 3. While all six DA singles players were in position to win, it was George (a 6-0, 6-2 winner on court 4) and Taylor Hunter (a 2-6, 6-0, 10-4 winner on court 5) who clinched the match and put the tennis team in the finals. Watch George’s final point below.
While DA has already beaten the Chargers twice this year, CA has played tough, especially in the Sept. 28 5-4 DA win at home.
While the girls golf team did not qualify for the team state championship earlier this week at Whispering Pines, junior Haley Leversedge was invited to participate in the individual competition. Leversedge shot a 101-106 to finish in 37th place in the 50-golfer field. Congratulations to Haley, coach Greg Murray and the golf team on a great season!
The volleyball team had its season end Friday afternoon at the hands of High Point Christian Academy in the first round of the state tournament. The Cougars defeated the Cavs in three sets: 25-16, 25-21, 25-16. Junior Michiko Haynie finished the season as the team-leader in kills with 220 and was second in hitting percentage (.210), second in aces (48) and third in digs (176). Sophomore Millie Loehr led the Cavs with a .302 hitting percentage, was second in kills with 167 and was third in aces with 42. Senior Ellie Palmer led the team with 55 aces and was third on the team with 130 kills. Sophomore Adriana Kim was the team leader in assists with 432. Congrats to the coach Heidi Kearnan and the volleyball team on a great year!
The field hockey team’s season came to a close last Friday in Charlotte as the Cavs fell 4-0 to Charlotte Country Day in the state quarterfinal round. Junior Eleanor Robb finished the year with a team-leading 11 goals and 28 points while ninth-grader Jaden Simpson was second on the team in both goals (10) and points (22). Senior Serafina Turner was third in both goals (8) and points (18). Sophomore Hannah Grant led DA with seven assists. Congratulations to coach Judy Chandler and her team on a great season!
The soccer team had its season end Oct. 17 at Ravenscroft in the state tournament first round. Three Cavs had double-figure goal-scoring years led by sophomore Ryan Kirschner’s 12. Senior Carter Owen added 11 goals, while junior Nick Epstein scored 10. Epstein also led the team with 11 assists, while Owen added six on the year. The soccer team finished with a final record of 8-6-2. Congrats to coach Julian Cochran on a great season!
Middle School Munchkins & Varsity Stars
In our second fall edition of “Middle School Munchkins & Varsity Stars,” Middle School Durham Academy Sports Network reporters interview senior Nicole Riepl from the varsity girls tennis team and varsity girls golf coach Greg Murray.
Fall Varsity Athletics Awards Program
Please remember that our Fall Varsity Athletic Awards Program for all varsity sport athletes and their families will be held on Monday, Oct. 30, in Brumley Performing Arts Building. The event will begin at 7 p.m.
Dates and times are set for basketball tryouts at the Upper School and Middle School levels. Tryouts for the boys varsity and junior varsity basketball teams will begin on Monday starting at 3:30 p.m. in Kirby Gym. Tryouts for the girls varsity and JV basketball teams will begin on Monday at 4:30 p.m. in the Lower School gym.
Tryouts for the Middle School boys teams will be on Nov. 6, 7 and 8 from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. in the Middle School Gym. Tryouts for the Middle School girls team will be on Nov. 9, 13 and 14 from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. in the Middle School Gym.
Swim team practices will begin on Wednesday at Campus Hills Pool.
Keeping up with the Cavs
As always, you can keep up with the Cavs on Durham Academy’s website and the DA App:
www.da.org/athletics: Schedules and Results
- 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.
- For a recap of athletics results and scores, visit www.da.org/scoreboard.
- 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.