LOCAL ROUNDUP: Giffa, Sargiunas sweep weekly conference awards

Jan. 30—HIGH POINT — High Point University's Kezza Giffa and Titas Sargiunas have been selected for this week's Big South Conference men's basketball awards.

Giffa, a junior guard, was chosen Player of the Week while Sargiunas, a freshman guard, was named Freshman of the Week.

Giffa averaged 30 points, 4.5 rebounds and three assists, plus shot 85% from the foul line, as the Panthers reached 7-0 in Big South play for the first time ever. He had 23 points and five rebounds in a win at USC Upstate and added a career-high 37 points at Winthrop on Saturday, in which he made the game-winning basket in the final second.

In two games off the bench, Sargiunas averaged eight points, one steal and shot 55 from the floor in 41 total minutes. He started with six points, one rebound and one assist in 17 minutes at USC Upstate, followed by a season-high 10 points with two rebounds and two steals in the Winthrop win. Sargiunas was also 4-of-4 from the free throw line against the Eagles.

On the women's side, Radford's Taniya Hanner was selected Player of the Week while Longwood's Otaifo Esenabhalu.


HIGH POINT — High Point University men's basketball coach Alan Huss was highlighted as Coach of the Week in ESPN's Men's Power Rankings.

Huss, in his first season after spending the previous six as an assistant at Creighton, has led the Panthers to their first 7-0 start in Big South Conference play for the first time in program history. They also extended their winning streak to 10 games, which is the longest in program history in the Division I era.

High Point, which was picked to finish seventh in the nine-team Big South preseason poll, remains the final unbeaten team atop the conference standings. It will host Longwood on Thursday at 7 p.m. in a game that will be televised on ESPNU.


HIGH POINT — Carolina Core FC has its first game on the calendar.

It will take on Crown Legacy FC on Sunday, March 17, at 5 p.m. at the Mecklenburg County Sportsplex. Crown Legacy FC, an affiliate of MLS club Charlotte FC, is in its second season in the MLS NEXT Pro.

Tickets are available for this match through Carolina Core FC. The club will begin preseason play on Friday, Feb. 3 — a stretch of seven matches that will lead into its inaugural season.


HIGH POINT — Carolina Core FC has signed forward Papa Ndoye to its inaugural roster. The club will begin play this spring at Truist Point.

Ndoye, 24, joins the club after previously playing with the Houston Dynamo 2. While playing with Dynamo 2, Ndoye, who plays striker, netted 19 goals and four assists over two seasons. He made 46 appearances, starting in 39.

Last season, Ndoye was named MLS NEXT Pro Player of Matchday 19 and 20, scoring hattricks in back-to-back matches to lead his team to two comeback victories.


TRIAD — Trinity and Thomasville will look to advance in the NCHSAA dual-team wrestling playoffs tonight, with the third round and regional championship at eight sites around the state.

Trinity, the top seed in the 2A West, will face 12th-seeded Lincolnton in the third round at Lincolnton, while Thomasville, the third seed in the 1A East, will take on second-seeded Rosewood in the third round at Uwharrie Charter.

The regional championship will begin shortly after the third round. Regional champions will advance to Saturday's state championships at the Greensboro Coliseum — 2A finals will begin at noon, and 1A finals will begin at 3.