Scrimmage Features Vikes, Pats
The Union Pines Vikings and Pinecrest Patriots boys’ basketball programs came together Wednesday evening in Cameron for a preseason scrimmage.
A sizable crowd was on hand at Bob Ward Gymnasium to witness the momentous event as the schools’ junior varsity and varsity teams went head-to-head competing on the hardwood for the first time in almost three years.
Prior to Wednesday night’s exhibition, the last time the Union Pines and Pinecrest boys met in basketball was on Nov. 21, 2009, in the opening round of The Pilot Cup at North Moore in Robbins — a game Pinecrest won 61-57.
The tilt was the last in what had been an annual cross-county rivalry series between the 4-A Pats and the 3-A Vikes.
Viking head coach Nick Boney, who served as an assistant coach for the Pinecrest boys’ varsity team for five seasons before taking over as the head coach at Union Pines prior to the 2010-2011 hoop season, spoke about the significance of the occasion after all the scrimmaging for the evening had subsided.
“I was very excited for this night because we (Union Pines) have not played them (Pinecrest) since I came over here,” he said. “So I was eager to see some former co-workers, fans and parents I knew when I was there.
“In a way it was very surreal for me — I love those guys over there still but I am a Union Pines guy now through-and-through.
“The main thing I wanted to do was to get this game back. It was a game we lost for other reasons, but I think the way both teams handled themselves tonight, in terms of the way they treated each other, along with the huge crowd support we received and the way those fans behaved will help us get that game back.”
Pinecrest and Union Pines have not met on the football field or on the hardwood in girls’ or boys’ basketball since an on-field altercation between the two schools’ varsity football programs in a game played at Pinecrest on Aug. 27, 2010, that the Patriots won 69-14. The immediate repercussion of the incident was that both football teams were banned from postseason play in 2010 in accordance with NCHSAA by-laws.
Neither school has had a representative confirm any particular reason behind their scheduling choices.
Patriot head coach Andrew Lacey was positive about the overall results of the cross-county scrimmage in his comments prior to his Pinecrest teams exiting the locker room and loading the bus for its short return trip down U.S. 1 to Southern Pines.
“I thought as a whole both programs played extremely hard tonight,” said Lacey. “I think overall this was a great thing for both schools. It was very well run. Union Pines was very hospitable to us and for that we offer our sincere gratitude and are congratulatory to them.
“Maybe next year we can work something out where we play them in a full-fledged scrimmage or even in a real game and see where it goes from there.”
First on the basketball agenda for the evening were two 10-minute running clock periods of scrimmaging between the Viking and Patriot junior varsity teams, with all players seeing plenty of action.
Then the varsity teams took the floor to a loud roar from the spectators in attendance to warm up for 10 minutes. That was followed by four 10-minute periods of scrimmage with a running clock.
Again all players on each roster saw plenty of court time. Fouls were called and if a violation was committed during the act of shooting one free-throw attempt was rewarded.
Since it was a running-clock style of scrimmage with no official books or time being kept no score was displayed on the two scoreboards during any of the sessions.
Contact F.W. Manning II at email@example.com.
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