CCU needs sixth (snow)man on hectic sports weekend

ccuhoops-snowmanThe snow and ice may be melted, but the after-effects of Winter Storm Pax continue to plague the Grand Strand sports schedule.

The Coastal Carolina baseball team has cancelled its 2014 season opener against Pittsburgh, which was set to be played in Florence. The two teams will instead open the season at 4 p.m. Saturday at Pelicans Ballpark in Myrtle Beach. The two teams will play a doubleheader at 11 a.m. Sunday.

The CCU men’s basketball team felt the brunt of the storm Thursday following its win at VMI on Wednesday night. The team bus broke down on I-74 just south of Mt. Airy, NC, finally making it back at 5 a.m. Friday with little time to prepare for Saturday’s home game against Gardner-Webb. Coastal coach Cliff Ellis called on a supportive home crowd to inspire his weary players for the 7 p.m. tipoff.

On the high school hoops courts, all local boys and girls teams to return to the hardwood Saturday night. The ice storm in late January already had already backloaded the schedule, and this one forced the SCHSL to push back the start of the playoffs for the second time this week. All classes will now play their first-round games on Thursday, Feb. 20, and the second round on Saturday, Feb. 22.

Saturday’s big game sees No. 1-ranked Myrtle Beach traveling to No. 6 North Myrtle Beach in a game that will determine the region boys and girls Region 7-3A title. The Chiefs will have to beat the Seahawks twice to earn the top seed, unless Myrtle Beach stumbles to Georgetown on Monday.

In other Saturday games, St. James hosts rival Socastee before visiting Wilson on Monday. In Class 4A, Conway and Carolina Forest will meet on Monday for a chance to claim the third and final playoff spot.

On the wrestling mat, two local wrestling powers, Socastee and St. James, will finally get to meet to settle the Lower State Championship at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Brave Wave. The winner will advance to the state championship match on Wednesday night at River Bluff High in Lexington.

The Myrtle Beach Marathon will run as scheduled on Saturday, but organizers have made allowances for late-arriving runners. Same-day number pickup will be held at the starting line at Pelicans Ballpark.

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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