ALBEMARLE — With the regular season past its midway point, two boys’ varsity basketball teams in Stanly County have distanced themselves from the pack thanks to their spotless conference records: West Stanly and North Stanly.
The Colts (7-0, 5-0 Rocky River Conference), who now sit atop the RRC standings, eclipsed the Mount Pleasant Tigers (4-3, 3-3 RRC) with a 62-53 finish on Jan. 26.
West Stanly had a rest day last Friday but was set to resume action Tuesday night with a home game versus Central Academy of Technology and Arts (2-6, 2-5 RRC). The Colts are currently ranked by MaxPreps.com as the third-best 2A team in North Carolina as well as the 27th-best overall team in the state.
Holding second and third in the RRC standings are the Anson Bearcats (4-1, 4-1 RRC) and Forest Hills Yellow Jackets (5-1, 3-1 RRC), respectively.
North Stanly’s season began with two nonconference losses — including one to the Colts — but the Comets (5-2, 5-0 Yadkin Valley Conference) have rattled off five consecutive conference victories, including Friday night’s 77-60 win over North Moore (2-2, 2-1 YVC).
North Stanly’s latest win was its third in three nights last week. On Jan. 27, the Comets knocked off Gray Stone Day (0-5, 0-5 YVC) 69-31 at home; the following night, North traveled to Albemarle (1-3, 0-3 YVC) and emerged victorious with a 72-71 overtime win.
The Comets were set for a Tuesday night home matchup with Chatham Central (4-0, 3-0 YVC). The Bears, who are the last undefeated team in the YVC, join the Comets and the Uwharrie Charter Academy Eagles (5-1, 4-0 YVC) as the three teams with no conference losses as of yet.
The first half of the regular season hasn’t been as kind to the other three Stanly County squads: the South Stanly Bulls (1-5, 1-3 YVC), Albemarle Bulldogs and Gray Stone Knights.
With a 63-35 win over the Knights on Friday night, the Bulls claimed their first victory of the year; up next for South Stanly are road matchups with North Moore (2-2, 2-1 YVC) and North Rowan (2-5, 2-3 YVC) this week.
Albemarle will also challenge North Moore this week before hosting Montgomery Central (1-6, 0-6 RRC) in a nonconference matchup on Thursday. Meanwhile, Gray Stone is aiming for its first win of the season when it plays North Rowan, Albemarle and North Stanly in its next stretch of games.