South Stanly boys stumble in second round of state playoffs

The Bulls finished their season with 23 total wins

Riding a six-game winning streak with both the Yadkin Valley Conference regular season and tournament titles in tow, the South Stanly Bulls boys’ basketball team came up short in the second round of 1A state playoffs on Friday.

Playing in front of their home crowd, the seventh-seeded Bulls (23-5, 9-1 Yadkin Valley) went down in a 55-52 loss to the No. 23 Mountain Island Charter Raptors (12-13, 2-12 Catawba Shores).

South’s 52-point offensive effort marked their fifth-lowest tally of the season and the lowest in nearly a month.

As the only Stanly County boys’ team to advance past the first round, the Bulls had defeated the No. 26 East Wilkes Cardinals (10-15, 4-8 Northwest) three days earlier in a 66-50 home finish and looked to be making a run through the tournament.

Finishing the season with 23 wins after a 7-17 record the year before, the total marks the highest that the Bulls have achieved since winning 19 games during the 2019-20 campaign.

Bandys 58, North Stanly 56

In the 2A bracket of the state tournament, the No. 10 North Stanly Comets (19-8, 9-2 Yadkin Valley) slipped up in a two-point home loss to the No. 23 Bandys Trojans (15-10, 7-7 Catawba Valley) in the first round of the 2A bracket on Feb. 27.

As second-place finishers in their conference standings, the Comets were coming off a 63-44 loss to South Stanly in the YVC Tournament championship game on Feb. 23 but had won six of seven prior to that.

North’s overall 19-win tally marks a six-win improvement over the 2022-23 season and is equal to its 19-win mark for the 2021-22 season.

Newton-Conover 80, West Stanly 58

With their fifth-consecutive loss, the No. 30 West Stanly Colts (12-14, 5-7 Rocky River) were knocked out of the 2A bracket on Feb. 27 with a first-round road loss to the No. 3 Newton-Conover Red Devils (22-7, 12-2 Catawba Valley).

The Colts had previously lost on the road to the Anson Bearcats (14-13, 5-7 Rocky River) a week earlier in the first round of the Rocky River Conference Tournament.

West posted 13 wins in the previous season, where it also got knocked out of the state playoffs in the first round.