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Demons on a winning streak

Fike claims 3rd straight Wells Fargo Conference Cup

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The Wells Fargo Conference Cup for the 3-A Big East will remain where it currently resides — off Harrison Drive.

On the heels of a spring season that saw Fike High win a pair of conference championships in baseball and boys golf, the Golden Demons held off archrival Hunt to capture their third straight Cup, the North Carolina High School Athletic Association announced Tuesday afternoon.

The Conference Cup is complementary to the statewide competition, which recognizes athletic supremacy in each conference across the state by awarding points based on performance in the NCHSAA postseason alone. The top eight teams in each sport, including ties, earn points.

At the conference level, each league has autonomy in determining the mechanisms it will use to award points.

Fike, with 191 points, edged out the Warriors on the strength of its two spring championships and concluded the fall with a Big East boys soccer title. The Demons posted runner-up results in girls tennis and boys cross-country and added a second-place showing in girls soccer during the spring. The Demons also won the Big East wrestling title.

“I think it speaks volumes about our coaches and our kids,” said Fike athletic director Tom Nelson, who completed his first year at the helm after succeeding Toni Varacchi. “I don’t think a lot needed fixing. I think Coach Varacchi has done a good job. I was trying to take the role of support and do what was needed administratively.”

Hunt, which compiled 186.5 points, won the Big East girls golf title in the fall and was second in volleyball. In the spring, the Warriors blitzed through the Big East girls soccer race in unbeaten fashion and added runner-up showings in baseball and boys golf.

Southern Nash, which vaulted to a third-place finish at 176.5 points, won another Big East football crown in the fall, claimed its second straight softball championship and deadlocked for a conference championship in boys tennis.

Franklinton (171), Rocky Mount (170) and Northern Nash (169) rounded out the field.

“We were very competitive and we strive for championships in everything,” Nelson said. “That’s our goal. As long as we work towards the common goal of being champions and being good sports, we’re going to win no matter what.”

OTHER AREA OUTCOMES

Nash Central continued to be the beneficiary of its move from 3-A to 2-A, winning spring championships in girls track, boys golf and baseball to clinch its second Cup as an EPC member.

Well-rounded North Johnston pocketed a pair of spring titles in boys tennis and softball to finish with 62.5 points, 3.5 back of Nash Central. Farmville Central, which won the state 2-A boys basketball title in undefeated fashion and swept girls and boys basketball races in the EPC, was third with 60.5. Beddingfield (57.5), SouthWest Edgecombe (54) and North Pitt (48.5) comprised the rest of the conference.

Washington was the runaway winner in the 2-A Eastern Carolina Conference, parlaying five spring championships in softball, girls soccer, girls track, baseball and boys golf. That allowed the Pam Pack to accumulate 750 points by league scoring metrics, easily outpacing second-place Ayden-Grifton at 522.5.

South Lenoir and North Lenoir tied for third at 507.5, while Greene Central’s sweep of boys and girls tennis championships helped it secure fifth place with 505 points over West Craven (487.5).

Kinston was seventh, accumulating 395 points.

Charles B. Aycock remained the preeminent Wayne County program in the split 3-A/4-A Eastern Carolina Conference, piling up 68.5 points compared to 53.5 for Eastern Wayne and 43 for Southern Wayne.

3-A Conley pushed past the rest of the field with three championships — girls soccer, baseball and softball — to accrue 118 points. That was enough to top Greenville Rose (92.5), 4-A Winterville South Central (90.5) and 4-A New Bern (83). 

Conley supplemented its performance in conference competition with a No. 9 overall showing in 3-A in the statewide competition. Raleigh Cardinal Gibbons won the 4-A Cup with 605 points, with 3-A Waxhaw Marvin Ridge (702.5), 2-A Croatan (515) and 1-A Community School of Davidson (447.5) also topping their respective classifications.

In 1-A, only three traditional four-year public high schools — No. 3 East Surry, No. 5 Murphy and No. 7 Polk County — made up the top 10.

The 2018-19 academic year represented the 40th year of the Wells Fargo (formerly Wachovia) Cup competitions.

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