A girls Player of the Year award for North Lincoln junior point guard Antaijah Easter and a girls Coach of the Year award to Lincolnton’s Jimmy Carr highlight Lincoln County’s honors in the 2012-2013 Southern Piedmont 1A/2A Conference basketball awards.
Easter led North Lincoln to a 17-10 overall record as the team’s leader in scoring (25.8 points per game), assists (72 total), blocks (39 total), rebounds (224 total) and steals (77 total). Easter scored 30-plus points 12 times this past season, and peaked at 41 points in an 80-30 win over East Lincoln on Feb. 15.
North Lincoln’s season ended with a first-round loss to North Henderson in the state playoffs.
Carr took Lincolnton to a 22-5 overall record, a regular-season championship tie with Lake Norman Charter and a conference tournament championship over LNC.
The Coach of the Year award is Carr’s third straight.
“I never dreamed, when I started coaching girls basketball, that at one point I would be three-time Coach of the Year,” Carr said. “That’s an accomplishment for the ladies and the program, from where we’ve come.”
The Lady Wolves went 11-13 six years ago in Carr’s first season as head coach, and suffered a 55-12 loss in the first round of the playoffs.
“That’s something I’ve said we’ll always remember,” Carr said, “and that one of these days we’ll look back and see how far we’ve come. But it took all the ladies, up to this point, to believe in what we’re preaching here at Lincolnton. To go from that point to being three-time coach of the year proves that the ladies have bought into the system.”
Lincolnton’s success this year was a fitting sendoff for All-Conference seniors Treasure Avery, Bridget Derr and Alexis Killian.
“This whole season has been like a dream come true,” Carr said. “I think this is a program award. It takes everyone in the program to give their best effort. The ladies are always dedicated and committed to excellence. They set their goals and their dreams came true this year.”
Carr also noted the importance of the contributions made by his assistants Ian Leith, Scott Mann and Mitch Cline and his wife Laura and his daughter Maelyn.
Lake Norman Charter coach Aaron Reeves and Bessemer City’s Brad James took individual awards on the boys side.
East Lincoln freshman Chazz Surratt and senior Tyler Brock were named to the boys All-Conference team. Lincolnton’s Alonzo Mobley and D.J. Cunningham were both selected, in addition to North Lincoln’s Christian Ramos and West Lincoln’s Brett Huff.
Easter’s North Lincoln teammate Payton Bruce was named to the All-Conference team along with Rylee Marsh and Rebecca Owens from West Lincoln and East Lincoln’s Jennifer Allison.