Thursday, November 27, 2014

Count Your Blessings: HCA Athletics Edition

10 Things to be Thankful for in HCA Athletics

As we celebrate Thanksgiving let's take a look at things to be thankful for since the last Thanksgiving Season.

1) HCA Football: The Crusader football team finished the 2014 season with a 6-6 record. Despite the teams mediocre record the team found a lot of success on the field. HCA advanced to the semifinals of the NCISAA Division II State Playoffs where the Crusaders lost to their common opponent Davidson Day. The Crusaders were led by group of talented hard working seniors who led HCA to multiple successful years during their tenure at "The Store". The HCA football team has a lot to look forward too next year as they return many talented seniors who will look to lead the Crusaders to their 14th State Championship Title.

2) Varsity Men's Basketball: The 2013-14 Varsity Men's Basketball finished their unexpected, successful season with a 17-6 record. Much like the football team, the Crusaders advanced to the final four- semifinals- of the NCISAA Division II State Playoffs. The Crusaders were led by many talented players including at the time sophomore center Quate Mckinzie and senior Graham DiPinto. Looking forward to the 2014-15 season: The Crusaders look to make up for the loss of their second leading scorer in DiPinto who averaged just over 13 points per game (PPG) and 7 rebounds per game (RPG). HCA will look to their long, athletic power forward from last year, Quate Mckinzie, who averaged 14 PPG and 11 RPG. Along side the athletic Mckinzie the Crusaders will extend the lead against their opponents with the help of returning starting guard Marcus Scarborough and with transfers Tyshii Scarborough and CJ Kirchoff. Get ready for the 2014-15 season by checking out the season preview and this year's Varsity Men's Basketball intro video.

3) Varsity Women's Basketball: The 2013-14 Varsity Women's Basketball team finished their season with a 15-4 record. The Crusaders clinched a playoffs spot in the NCISAA Division II State playoffs where the Lady Crusaders fell short in the first round. HCA looks to build on their success this year under the leadership of four returning seniors, Jessi Kate Batts, Margaret Clark, Natalie Hardin, and Ashely Usher. The Lady Crusaders will be under the leadership of long time head Coach Wayne Cannady who will look to lead HCA back to the playoffs in contention for a state championship title.

4) Varsity Men's Baseball: Adding on the the success of the other sports teams the 2014 Varsity Men's Baseball team advanced to the state championship of the NCISAA Division II State Playoffs where the Crusaders came up short in the Title Game. The Crusaders dominated in conference play and easily claimed a conference title. HCA finished the season with a 13-6 record. The Crusaders will look to vie for a State Championship Title in the upcoming season with talent all over the diamond. The Crusaders lost multiple good seniors from last year's team but have many athletes in place to fill those positions.

5) Varsity Women's Softball: REPEAT! The Lady Crusader Softball team claimed yet another State Championship Title in the 2014 season. The Crusaders claimed their second title in two years with their 10-3 state championship win over their common opponent Parrott Academy. HCA finished the season with an 18-3 record. The softball team also claimed their title as conference champions to go along with their state title. The Lady Crusaders look to 3-PEAT this upcoming year with another State Championship Title. HCA returns many key players who will help their team play for some another championship ring.

6) College Athletes: The 2013-14 graduating class produced four athletes who performed or will perform at the college level in the upcoming seasons. The slate of talented athletes included Dakota Boggs, Anna DeVane, Anna Huff, and Haylee Parks. Dakota Boggs took his talents to Methodist University where he pursued his dream of playing college football. Boggs was named to the NCISAA All State team as a center for the Crusaders during his senior season. Anna DeVane, who led the Crusader softball team to back to back state titles, carried her athletic ability on the diamond to UNCW. DeVane hopes to carry on her success as a Seahawk during the upcoming 2014-15 season. Anna Huff pursued her volleyball dreams by making her mark as a Meredith Avenging Angel. The tall athletic volleyball star helped the Avenging Angels to a very successful season. Haylee Parks joined her partner in crime on the court as an Avenging Angel where she took her great setting statistics and skills to Meredith.

7) Coaches: The coaches at Harrells Christian Academy put in countless hours to better develop each student athlete into a better individual on the playing fields, in the classroom, and in the world.

8) Faculty and Staff: The faculty and staff of HCA care about each and every student at Harrells. They help support the needs of each student that walks through the doors of Harrells Christian Academy.

9) Dean Wells: Dean Wells puts in many countless hours into HCA athletics in order to prepare the athletics facilities for competition. HCA has outstanding athletic facilities that can be attributed to the hard work of Dean Wells.

10) God: God is the most important person to be thankful for. Without His grace and guidance nothing at Harrells Christian Academy would be possible.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

HCA Varsity Men's Basketball Dominates Carolina Friends in Season Opener

The Harrells Christian Academy Varsity Men's Basketball team started their season with a 70-32 victory over Carolina Friends School on Saturday. The highly anticipated season started out just as expected with a convincing win over the Quakers.

The Crusaders did not take long to get their offense flowing by putting up 23 points in the first quarter. The Crusader defense did not back down the entire game by shutting down the Quaker's offensive attack. Harrells continued their success and headed into the half with a 41-12 lead. Marcus
Scarborough led the Crusaders in scoring in the first half with 13 points.

HCA continued attacking in the second half and cruised to a 70-32 victory over the Quakers. Marcus Scarborough led the Crusaders in scoring with 16 points quickly followed by CJ Kirchoff and Quate Mckinzie who tallied 14 points. Mckinzie also pulled in 9 rebounds for the Crusaders. Other Crusader scorers included Tyshii Scarborough with 8 points, Evan Hardison with 6, Corey Pruitt with 5, Spencer Cooke with 4, Justin Smith with 2 and Davis Jones with 1.

The Varsity Men look to improve to 2-0 in their next home game against Rocky Mount Academy on Tuesday December 2 at 7:30. All of the Crusader basketball teams with be in action next Tuesday against the Eagles.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

HCA Varsity Men's Basketball Season Preview

The Harrells Christian Academy Varsity Men's basketball team opens their season on Saturday November 22 at home against Carolina Friends. The Crusaders enter the 2014-15 season coming off a 17-6 performance in the previous season. The 2013-14 Crusaders advanced to the final four of the NCISAA State Playoffs. Harrells looks to further their success and contend for a State Championship in the upcoming season.

Quate Mckinzie's size and athletic ability will be a key
to the Crusaders' success this season.
 The Crusaders are led by six seniors as well as six returning players from last year's varsity team. Among the returning players is Quate Mckinzie who led Harrells in scoring and rebounding last year with 14 points per game and 11 rebounds per game.  The Crusaders also add potential talent from juniors who performed well on the Junior Varsity team last year. The former JV players include talent such as Corey Pruitt who led the young Crusaders in scoring and Davis Jones who will provide leadership at the point guard position.

Harrells Christian accompanies their talent across the court with players who transferred to HCA this year. The talented newcomers are led by junior small forward CJ Kirchoff who played for Laney High School last year where he averaged just under 10 points per game. Tyshii Scarborough, brother of HCA guard Marcus Scarborough, also joins the talented roster this season. Tyshii Scarborough, who started for Wallace Rose Hill's varsity team last year, hopes to serve a vital role in controlling the offense this year from the lead guard position. The Crusaders extend their field of talented athletes with, Davonta Best and Quinton Faison.

With the freedom of having multiple ball handlers such as junior guard Donta Chavious, the Crusaders will turn to Marcus Scarborough to become more of a scoring menace on the court. The junior guard averaged 10.7 points per game last year and looks to strengthen his offensive play throughout the year in an effort to lead the Crusaders to a State Championship Title.

Spencer Cooke's shooting ability will be a lethal weapon
for the Crusaders' offensive attack this season.
A key player to watch this upcoming season is Spencer Cooke who could become a key contributor to the Crusaders on both sides of the ball. The senior guard served as a sixth man last year and only averaged 2.5 points per game but has worked hard during the off season to improve his arsenal of scoring abilities. Cooke provides great senior leadership and many intangible skills. He could become an impact player throughout the year for the Crusaders.

Harrells is led by six year head coach Clayton Hall. The Harrells Christian Alum looks to lead his talented team back to the state playoffs for a chance to contend for a state championship. The Crusaders have not won a state championship in basketball since 1979. HCA hopes to bring home the trophy and continue their growing success.

Monday, November 17, 2014

HCA Ends Season with Loss to Davidson Day

The Harrells Christian Academy football team lost to Davidson Day, 52-6, on Friday night in the semi-finals of the NCISAA Division II State Playoffs. Patriots have had the Crusader's number in the past three years and continued their success on Friday night.

Davidson Day did not take any time to find the end zone as the Patriots marched down the field and scored on a 37 yard touchdown pass. The Crusaders then found themselves marching down the field but were stopped after a interception on a halfback pass by Marcus Scarborough that was returned for a touchdown  to extend the Patriots lead to 14-0 with 8:45 left in the first quarter.

Harrells was then forced to punt on fourth down but recovered the ball after the returner for the Patriots muffed the punt on the Davidson Day 20 yard line. The Crusaders converted off the Patriot turnover on a 1 yard touchdown run by OH Rouse to tighten the Patriots lead to 14-6.

Davidson Day answered back with a 52 yard touchdown pass on the Patriots first offensive play to extend their lead to 20-6 with 4:21 left to play first quarter. The Patriots went on to score three more touchdowns before the half to lengthen their lead to 40-6.

The Crusaders did not find the end zone for the remainder of the game ending their season with a 52-6 loss to the three time defending state champions. The Patriots take on South Lake Christian next week in the finals of the NCISAA State Playoffs.

Marcus Scarborough finished the game with 108 yards on 26 carries for the Crusaders. Fredrick Strickland led the Crusaders on defense with 7 tackles.

Harrells Christian closes out the 2014 season with a record of 6-6. The Crusaders look to win their first state title since 2008 next year as Davidson Day and South Lake Christian both move up to Division III. HCA has claimed 13 state titles in the history of the football program. The Crusaders will be under the leadership of six seniors who look to bring home a state title.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

HCA Takes on Familiar Foe, Davidson Day, in State Semi-Final Game

The Harrells Christian Academy Crusaders take on a familiar opponent, Davidson Day, Friday night in the semi-final round of the NCISAA Division II State Playoffs. The Crusaders have struggled in recent years against the Patriots and look to finally seek revenge against their talented opponent.

The Crusaders enter the matchup with a 6-5 record and are coming off a convincing 49-13 victory over Cannon School. The Crusaders found their offensive groove again and cruised to victory behind their junior running back Marcus Scarborough who finished the game with 168 yards and 3 touchdowns. Scarborough has earned 1,369 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns throughout the season. The Patriots are coming of a high scoring, 61-13, blowout against North Raleigh Christian. Davidson Day has cruised through the regular season earning a record of 9-1.

The Patriots look to continue their historical success in the passing game against the Crusaders. Without former star quarterback and Mr. Football USA, Will Grier, the Patriots look to ride on the success of their new quarterback, Anthony DiGioia. The first year transfer from Hough High School had not started a high school game before transferring to Davidson Day. The senior quarterback's numbers however do not illustrate his absence on the field in previous years. DiGioia has totaled 2,557 passing yards (283 Yards Per Game) and 27 touchdowns in his first season. His success in the passing game has earned him a quarterback rating of 113. He has led the Patriots to 3,444 total yards of offense.

The healthy Crusader defense looks to slow down the Patriot offense on Friday night in what will be yet another high scoring battle.

Team Stat Comparison:

Harrells Christian AcademyDavidson DayNational Average
277.1Rushing Yards Per Game68.0184.4
29.4Passing Yards Per Game276.4117.4
277.1Total Yards Per Game68.0259.8
69.5Tackles Per Game73.655.8
1.5Sacks Per Game1.91.6
30.0Points Per Game29.725.7
-Pancake Blocks831

Player Stat Comparison:

Harrells Christian AcademyDavidson Day
136.9#5 Marcus ScarboroughRushing Yards Per Game39.9#28 Cullen McGahan
29.4#9 O. h. RousePassing Yards Per Game283.0#15 Anthony Digioia
136.9#5 Marcus ScarboroughTotal Yards Per Game39.9#28 Cullen McGahan
10.3#66 F. StricklandTackles Per Game12.6#58 Chase Monroe
0.4#71 Jordan MusselwhiteSacks Per Game0.6#56 Ryan Titus
12.2#5 Marcus ScarboroughPoints Per Game8.6#28 Cullen McGahan
Pancake Blocks4#63 Dustin Tyler

Kickoff: 7:00
Where: Northside Christian Academy (333 Jeremiah Boulevard)
Coverage: Follow HCA Athletics on Twitter: @hca_athletics

Saturday, November 8, 2014

HCA Dominates in the Opening Round of State Playoffs

PThe Harrells Christian Academy football team found their rhythm again on Friday night against Cannon School. The Crusaders have struggled in recent weeks to find their groove on the offensive side of the ball but they turned their struggles around on Friday night in their 49-13 win.

The Crusader defense gave their offense many scoring opportunities throughout the night. The HCA defense did not allow the Cougars to find the end zone in the first half. The Crusaders however, found the end zone early after a forced punt by the defense. Marcus Scarborough scampered into the end zone from 37 yards out to give the Crusaders an early 7-0 lead.

The Crusaders forced yet another punt and marched straight down the field. The Cougar defense however forced the Crusaders to turn the ball over on downs on the goal line. The Crusader defense answered right back with a statement of their own. OH Rouse intercepted a pass from Cannon quarterback Bryce Estes and returned the ball 7 yards for a touchdown.

The Crusader defense came up with a blocked punt that gave the Crusaders the ball on the Cougar 26 yard line in the early stages of the second quarter. HCA running back, Marcus Scarborough found the end zone on the ensuing play on a 26 yard touchdown run to extend the HCA lead to 21-0 with 10:52 left to play in the second quarter.

The Crusaders then forced another punt and marched down the field to find the end zone one final time before the half on another touchdown run from Marcus Scarborough from 45 yards out.

The Crusaders went into halftime with a 28-0 lead and would not look back. Marcus Scarborough headed into the half with 155 yards on 13 carries and 3 touchdowns.

After failed possessions by both teams the Crusaders punched the ball into the end zone on a 6 yard touchdown run by Quinton Faison to lengthen the HCA lead to 35-0 with 4:22 left in the third quarter.
The Cougars finally found the end zone on a 19 yard touchdown pass to tighten the scoring margin to 35-7.

The Crusaders forced the Cougars to turn the ball over on downs giving the Crusaders the ball back on the Cougar 47. The Crusaders marched down the field and capped off the drive with a two yard quarterback keeper by OH Rouse for a touchdown. The Cougars answered with a 16 yard touchdown pass to make the score 42-13 with 11:54 left to play in the game.

The Crusaders ran the clock out for the remainder of the game and found the end zone one final time on a one yard touchdown run by Will Huff to seal the 49-13 victory over Cannon School.

Marcus Scarborough finished the game with 168 yards on 19 carries and 3 touchdowns. Quinton Fasion also broke the 100 yard mark on 15 carries and 1 touchdown. Both Davonta Best and OH Rouse grabbed an interception for the Crusaders to help seal a victory over the Cougars.

The Crusaders advance to the second round of the NCISAA Division II State Playoffs where they will take on the #1 seeded Davidson Day School. The Crusaders and Patriots have hashed it out the past 5 years in tightly contested, high scoring battles. The Crusaders however, have not found a way to come out with a win over the Patriots in previous years but look to overcome recent history and advance to the state championship game.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

HCA Football: First Round Playoff Preview

The Crusaders will face 3 time defending State Champions Davidson Day in the second round of the playoffs with a win against the Cannon School
The Harrells Christian Academy Crusader football team enters the NCISAA Divison II State Playoffs as a #5 seed. The Crusaders will face the Cannon school in the first round of the playoffs. Both teams enter the first round of the playoffs with a record of 5-5. HCA is coming off a heartbreaking, 34-26, loss to Ravenscroft in the Big East Conference championship game. The Cougars enter the game after an impressive 29-14 victory over Wake Christian Academy who defeated the Crusaders earlier in the season.

The Crusaders outmatch the Cougars in nearly every statistical category except for passing yards. Cannon averages 88 passing yards per game while the Crusaders only average 32 yards per game. The Crusaders, however, have used the passing game to quickly turn the momentum in games multiple times this year. Cannon will look to spread the ball around to multiple receivers and running backs throughout the game in order to stay fresh throughout the game. The short handed Crusaders will have to find a way to keep up with the constant rotation of players by the Cougars.

HCA has struggled throughout the year with players being out for multiple reasons, from injuries to suspension. HCA will be without their starting fullback, Joseph Phaneuf (Shoulder) , and starting tight end, Ethan Hall (Concussion). The Crusaders will heavily rely on their leading rusher Marcus Scarborough who has tallied 1,201 yards on 175 carries and 14 touchdowns this season. The junior tailback is averaging just over 133 yards per game.

The Crusaders defeated the Cougars in convincing fashion last year, 75-7. The Cannon School looks to seek revenge on Friday and send the Crusaders back to the store with a loss.

Game info:
Where: Cannon School, Concord, NC (5801 Poplar Tent Road Concord, NC 28027)

Kickoff: 7:00

Monday, November 3, 2014

Second Half Surge by Crusaders Comes Up Short in Conference Championship Game

The Harrells Christian Academy Crusader football team lost to Ravenscroft Friday night, 34-26, in the NCISAA Big East Conference Championship game. The HCA offensive attack started off slow by not finding the end zone in the first quarter. The Ravens converted on the Crusaders' struggles with an early score on a 1 yard touchdown run to give the Ravens an early 7-0 lead.

The Ravens came up with two more defensive stops that set up two more touchdowns to extend their lead to 20-0 in the second quarter. The Crusaders finally found the end zone on a 21 yard touchdown run by Marcus Scarborough to narrow the scoring gap to 20-7 with 5:05 left to play in the first half. Ravenscroft answered back with another touchdown on a 9 yard touchdown run to extend the Ravens' lead back to 27-7 in the waining stages of the first half.

Ravenscroft received to start the second half but were stopped on on fourth down by the Crusader defense. HCA found the end zone on a 21 yard touchdown reception from OH Rouse to Marcus Scarborough to make the score 27-13 with 5:45 in the third quarter. The early second half score sparked new life into the Crusaders allowing them to make a second half run towards a comeback win.

The Crusaders came up big on the ensuing defensive possession. Davonta Best intercepted a screen pass by the Ravens and returned it 46 yards for a touchdown. The defensive touchdown cut the deficit to 27-20 with 4:17 left in the third quarter.

The Ravens answered with with a 29 yard touchdown run to make the score 34-20 in the early stages of the fourth quarter. HCA however, offered a counter attack on a 73 yard touchdown pass from OH Rouse to Davonta Best, for the second passing score of the night, to shorten the Ravens lead to 34-26.

The Crusader defense then forced a long field goal by the Ravens that was pushed to the left leaving the score 34-26 with less than a minute to play. The Crusader offense was then stopped on fourth down allowing the Ravens to seal the 34-26 victory and claim the title of NCISAA Big East Conference Champions.

Marcus Scarborough led the Crusader's offensive attack with 155 yards on 30 carries with 1 touchdown. The junior running back also caught one pass that resulted in a 21 yard touchdown reception.  OH Rouse finished the game with 94 passing yards and 2 touchdowns. Davonta Best contributed all over the field for the Crusaders with 73 receiving yards and one touchdown to go along with an interception returned 46 yards for a score. Seniors OH Rouse and Fredrick Strickland combined for 20 tackles on the defensive side of the ball for the Crusaders.

HCA enters the NCISAA Division ll State Playoffs as a #5 seed. The Crusaders will travel to Concord to take on the Cannon School in the first round of the playoffs on Friday November 7- Kickoff at 7:00. The Crusaders defeated the Cougars 75-7 in their match up last year. The two teams enter the game with records of 5-5. HCA hopes to start their playoff run with a win Friday night in search for yet another State Championship Title. HCA has claimed 13 state titles in the history of the football program, however the Crusaders have not staked their claim as State Champions since 2008.
The Crusaders enter the State Playoffs as a 5 seed and look to make a run for a State Championship under the leadership of first year head coach Winfred Johnson.