For the second time in three years, the North Central High volleyball team proved to be inhospitable hostesses as the Lady Knights won their own Carolina Challenge Volleyball Tournament held Saturday in Boonetown.
Playing minus six starters who were unavailable for every reason from illness to suspension to injury, North Central went into Friday night's home game with Buford short-handed. But NC head coach Louis Clyburn said he was more rankled with the players he had at his disposal rather than those he could not coach on this night.
In each of North Central's first three games of the season, the Knights have out-gained the opposition in total yards. Still, Louis Clyburn's team finds itself searching for that first victory of the season.
Just when it looked like North Central was going to make its move against rival Andrew Jackson, the Volunteers came up with a trump card.
The North Central boys cross country team opened their season by finishing fourth in a five-team in Cheraw on Wednesday.
He smiled as he talked about his current team and his former team, which will meet tonight for the third time on the football field since Louis Clyburn left as head coach at Andrew Jackson after one season to take the reins at North Central, which is a hop, skip and a jump from his boyhood home.
Tiffany Rogers dished out 35 assists to help get the North Central offense in gear for what became a three-game sweep over rival Andrew Jackson in a non-region volleyball pairing on Tuesday in Kershaw.
When then-junior Chad Hampton ran off with the class A state boys' cross country title in 2009, he put North Central on the state running map.
This season is beginning just like last year for the North Central High volleyball teams.
Through the first two games of the season, North Central has amassed nearly as many yards in total offense as it did during its entire 2009 campaign. At least, that is the way it seems to third-year Knights head coach Louis Clyburn.
If a season goes along the same lines as a first match, then this could be a special volleyball season at North Central.
After traveling to the Grand Strand last week, North Central will take its non-conference tour of the Palmetto State to Greenville tonight to meet St. Joseph's Catholic school for the second time in as many years.
For countless reasons, strange things tend to happen during the first game of the season.
Fortunately, North Central is better equipped to handle having a wrench thrown into its plans for its season opener.
After having his team double their win total from 2009 with a 2-8 season a year ago, North Central head football coach Louis Clyburn is not saying that his program has turned the corner. But at least, the Knights have the turn signal on.