Playing at home for the first time this season, Cape Fear Christian Academy split varsity basketball contests with visiting Wayne Country Day, with the Eagles winning the boys game, but the Chargers winning the girls game.
After a strong first half performance in the boys game, Cape Fear Christian withstood a third-quarter surge from Wayne before finishing strong to win, 68-48.
“We knew walking into this game that Wayne Country Day was a talented team,” said first-year CFCA boys coach Steve Mims, Jr. “They have about four or five returners. That have some potential Division I players. They have a really good coach (Nathan Faulk).
“We knew walking in that they would be ready and prepared. So, as we got into the game, we got hit in the mouth and they got hit in the mouth. We continued to keep competing and we were able to execute, keep our heads straight and actually play the game and win it.”
Cinque Lemon had 26 points, Amari Pearson had 13 points and Caden Bell had 10 points to lead the Eagles (2-0).
Jabare Perry had six points. Silla Tako had five points. Milos Prodanovic and Zeke Brock had three points apiece and Paul Tako had two points.
Jaden Cooper paced the Chargers (0-1) with 15 points.
The Eagles dominated the first quarter, outscoring the Chargers 18-4, and also outscored the Chargers 19-16 in the second quarter to hold a 37-20 lead at halftime.
The Chargers lost senior guard Carlos Raven just before halftime, as he was called for a technical foul for the use of profanity, which is also an automatic ejection in high school sports.
Wayne opened the third quarter with a 13-5 run to cut the lead to single digits, but Cape Fear Christian finished the quarter with a 6-1 run and went on to outscore Wayne 20-14 in the fourth quarter.
Mims was pleased that he was able to bench his starters late in the fourth and get some playing time for his reserves.
“We’re deep,” Mims said. “It’s significant (getting everyone playing time), especially when you’ve got a schedule where you’ve got to have five games in the same week. With the balance and us bringing in some of the younger guys, it’s really going to help us out.”
Wayne CD girls win
Cape Fear Christian struggled to find consistency in a 66-23 loss to Wayne Country Day in the girls game.
“Three of my leading scorers got in foul trouble,” said CFCA girls coach Bobby Lamb. “One of them got three fouls in the first six minutes of the ball game and had to sit out the entire second quarter. The other two got them early in the second quarter. So, that put us in a hole the whole night. But the good point about it is we had the opportunity to bring some other players off of the bench to get some experience. And this was a well-rounded team we played tonight. They had both inside and outside. After coming off of a win last night, I think we let our guards down a little tonight.”
Gracie Byrd paced the Eagles (1-1) with 13 points.
“She really stepped up tonight,” Lamb said. “She was a leader tonight and her energy level was high tonight.”
Ella John Dupree had four points and Meredith Taylor, Leah Brannon and Laney Trainer had two points apiece.
Ja’kea Brunson had 27 points, Kimora Cox had 21 points and Carleigh Greiman had 14 points to lead the Chargers (1-0).
Wayne outscored Cape Fear Christian 12-4 in the first quarter, 14-6 in the second quarter, 18-12 in the third quarter and 22-1 in the fourth quarter.
Cape Fear Christian hosts its annual Senior Classic tournament on Friday and Saturday. The Eagles face Crossroads Christian in the first round, with the girls game slated to begin at 6:30 p.m. and the boys game scheduled for 8 p.m.