Earl’s Pearls 11/27

By Earl Vaughan Jr.

 

I know there are a lot of people who aren’t big fans of Facebook these days, but one feature I regularly enjoy is the daily memories it shares with me.

At some point, a notification will pop up on my timeline telling me I’ve got random memories with an assortment of people and places from previous years of postings.

This week, as we continue to deal with the challenges of COVID-19, I was struck by some the reminders that the Facebook algorithms and formulas chose for me.

Last year on my page, Gray’s Creek athletic director Troy Lindsey was encouraging students to sign up for a chartered bus to the Bears’ state football playoff game at Wilmington New Hanover. The host Wildcats won, 47-21, and the Bears are still waiting for a chance to play again because of the pandemic.

On the Friday Night Lights Facebook page, there was the iconic image  that showed Odessa Permian teammates Mike Winchell, Brian Chavez and Ivory Christian walking onto the field holding hands. The caption read, “Today, we’re giving thanks for the game.”

Moving on, I found a picture of the 1983 4-A NCHSAA football playoff bracket on a post from 2015, noting that until that year, it had been the final time a Terry Sanford football team made it to the Thanksgiving week of the state playoffs. 

All high school football folks know playing on Thanksgiving week has long been a clear indicator you’ve had a great season.

My memories ended with a bit of humor I shared with my followers, repeating an old Thanksgiving joke, that if you can’t be thankful for anything else during this season, be thankful you aren’t a turkey.

As we continue to deal with the challenges of this pandemic, I’m reminded of a lot of things I’m thankful for in this season of the year.

I’m thankful I’m reunited with former co-workers Tony Chavonne, Kim Hasty, Bill Kirby Jr. and John Jones as I get to tell the stories of high school athletes and their coaches in my new role with CityView magazine.

I’m thankful for teachers and coaches like my friend Joe Grates at Cape Fear, who took a moment on Twitter recently to share this meaningful post.

“Today I put the brakes on schoolwork and took the time to ask my students how they were doing and if they were okay,’’ he wrote. “They’re struggling to cope with school, work, care for siblings, anxiety, depression, helplessness and chaos. They NEED our compassion.’’

I’m thankful for athletes in swimming, cross country and volleyball, who are currently dealing with an assortment of COVID-19 protocols as they finally get to return to competition.

I’m thankful for all the other athletes, largely at area private schools, that met the challenge and competed in fall sports and are getting ready to move into the winter season.

I am both thankful for and continue to pray for the huge number of athletes and coaches who missed their season in the fall and are still waiting for the chance to resume competition.

I ask you to be as optimistic as you can, to keep observing all the COVID-19 restrictions, as difficult as they may be to deal with, as we all fight to beat this deadly disease and get back to normal as quickly as possible. 

Let’s hope this time next year, the virus will be a Facebook memory that we have long ago chosen to forget.

THIS WEEK’S SCHEDULE

 

VOLLEYBALL

Dec. 1

Westover at E.E. Smith 

Gray’s Creek at Terry Sanford

South View at Pine Forest

Douglas Byrd at Cape Fear

Jack Britt at Hoke County

Seventy-First at Purnell Swett

Dec. 3

Cape Fear at Westover

Overhills at Gray’s Creek

E.E. Smith at South View

Pinecrest at Jack Britt

Richmond Senior at Seventy-First

 

CROSS COUNTRY

Nov. 30

Pinecrest, Scotland, Hoke County, Seventy-First at Southern Pines Elk’s Lodge

Richmond Senior, Lumberton, Purnell Swett, Jack Britt at Richmond Senior

 

BASKETBALL

Nov. 27

BOYS

New Life Christian at Freedom Christian

Nov. 28

BOYS

Grace Christian at Freedom Christian

Nov. 30

BOYS

Northwood Temple at Berean Baptist

GIRLS

Northwood Temple at Berean Baptist

Dec. 1

BOYS

HA Prep Academy at Freedom Christian

Thomas Academy at Village Christian

Trinity Christian at Mount Zion Christian

GIRLS

Trinity Christian at Mount Zion Christian

Dec. 2

BOYS

Fayetteville Academy at Rocky Mount Academy

GIRLS

Fayetteville Academy at Rocky Mount Academy

Dec. 3

BOYS

Northwood Temple at Trinity Academy

Raleigh Home School at Trinity Christian

GIRLS

Northwood Temple at Trinity Academy

Fayetteville Christian at Scotland Christian

 

LAST WEEK’S RESULTS

 

BASKETBALL

Nov. 20

BOYS

Cannon 89, Freedom Christian 59

New Life Christian 70, Village Christian 52

GIRLS

Village Christian 53, New Life Christian 14

Nov. 21

BOYS

Carmel Christian 93, Northwood Temple 61

Concord Academy 72, Trinity Christian 48

Nov. 21

BOYS

Victory Christian 61, Northwood 59

GIRLS

Trinity Christian 62, Davidson Day 59

Nov. 23

BOYS

Faith Christian 67, Fayetteville Academy 38

Nov. 24

BOYS

Trinity Christian 67, Village Christian 26

GIRLS

Trinity Christian 72, Village Christian 34

VOLLEYBALL

Nov. 23

South View 3, Westover 0
Cape Fear 3, Overhills 0
Gray’s Creek 3, E.E. Smith 0
Pine Forest 3, Douglas Byrd 0
Jack Britt 3, Richmond Senior 1
Lumberton 3, Seventy-First 1
Nov. 24
Terry Sanford 3, Overhills 1
Gray’s Creek 3, Cape Fear 0
E.E. Smith 3, Douglas Byrd 0
Jack Britt 3, Purnell Swet 1
Scotland 3, Seventy-First 0
Pine Forest 3, Westover 0