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Calhoun County Shines at North-South Roundup

Cover photo: Estella Connell (center right) poses with her father Russ, mother Karen (center left) and Donoho coach Anna Taylor after playing in the North-South All-Star volleyball match Thursday in Montgomery. (Submitted photo)
Cover photo: Estella Connell (center right) poses with her father Russ, mother Karen (center left) and Donoho coach Anna Taylor after playing in the North-South All-Star volleyball match Thursday in Montgomery. (Submitted photo)

Montgomery, AL – Donoho’s Connell makes her net presence known as volleyball completes the AHSAA’s All-Star Sports Week. A look back at local highlights from All-Star Sports Week:

 

Chris Randall finally got the full experience coaching the AHSAA boys’ North All-Star golf team Monday, and White Plains’ Isabel Rogers got her chance on the girls’ side.

Both came away victorious.

The North boys won 55-35, and the North girls won 48.5-41.5. The team of Rogers and Southside’s Mallory Brooks won 11 of 18 holes against South counterparts Kara Busbin (Stanhope Elmore) and Caroline Reeves (Andalusia) at Arrowhead Country Club.

The AHSAA’s All-Star Sports Week opened with golf Monday, with baseball following. The North baseball team included Alexandria’s Andrew Allen, Oxford’s Carter Johnson and Piedmont’s McClane Mohon.

Monday marked Randall’s second chance to coach the North All-Star boys’ team. Weather shortened the round to nine holes in 2019.

North and South sides break down into two-person tandems who play a match-play format. If teams tie on a hole, each side gets half of a point.

Teams have a Sunday practice, and that’s where a lot of the coaching happens.

“We’re practicing and getting to know guys until 7 o’clock, and we eat at the course,” Randall said. “Coaching, you have to go around, meet the guys, watch them play a practice nine and keep score.

“My job is to pair them. Who’s going to play with whom? Who hits it long and wild? Who hits it short and straight? Who’s a fiery temperament? Who’s more laid back? Some of them play against each other a lot and don’t like each other, so who do I not want to put together.”

The rest involves meeting and talking through a game plan for the course.

Rogers and Brooks know each other well and made a natural pairing.

“Me and her did really well together, since we knew each other from playing high school golf together,” Rogers said. “It was really fun.”

Baseball

The North won Game 1 11-4, and Game 2 ended in a 5-5 tie. Johnson, Mohon and Allen contributed.

In Game 1, Johnson went 1-for-3 with a run and stolen base. Mohon went 1-for-1 with a walk, two runs and two stolen bases.

Allen got the start and the win, pitching two innings before exiting with a 6-3 lead.

In Game 2, Mohon went 1-for-2 with a walk, RBI and a steal. Johnson went 1-for-2 with an RBI and a steal. Johnson also pitched a perfect inning with two strikeouts.

Basketball

Oxford’s Xai Whitfield scored six points with a rebound and an assist as the North girls beat the South 80-44 on Tuesday.

Also for the North, Spring Garden’s Chloe Rule saw action and contributed two rebounds.

The South boys won 81-79.

Cross country

North boys’ and girls’ swept, and Munford’s Dakota Frank finished third in 15:41.11. North’s Ethan Edgeworth won in 15:15.13.

Softball

Randolph County’s Brantlee Wortham went 2-for-3 with an RBI, and Glencoe’s Abigail Bunt drove in a run as North tied South 3-3 in Game 1 and lost Game 2 6-5 on Wednesday.

Soccer

Donoho’s Erin Turley took three of the North girls’ 21 shots in a 3-2 victory over South. The North boys, which included Glencoe’s Aidan Cornutt, won 6-3.

Volleyball

Donoho’s Estella Connell had a kill and a block in the North’s 3-1 loss to South on Thursday. With the North-South football game set for December, the volleyball match concluded All-Star Sports Week.

“It was amazing, and the game was a whole different experience,” Connell said. “The practices were amazing, especially coming together and getting to meet all of the girls, but the game, we were able to come together and play like a full team against a totally amazing team, as well. It was so fun seeing all of the energy come out.”

Connell has played for three state-championship teams and a runner-up team at Donoho. What was it like, playing with all-stars.

“It was awesome,” she said. “It was almost like another state game. As the game went on, playing with such amazing athletes was just another crazy experience.”

Cover photo: Estella Connell (center right) poses with her father Russ, mother Karen (center left) and Donoho coach Anna Taylor after playing in the North-South All-Star volleyball match Thursday in Montgomery. (Submitted photo)
Cover photo: Estella Connell (center right) poses with her father Russ, mother Karen (center left) and Donoho coach Anna Taylor after playing in the North-South All-Star volleyball match Thursday in Montgomery. (Submitted photo)

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