LAURINBURG — The Scotland baseball team enjoyed a stellar 2016 campaign under first-year skipper Chad Hill, and the Scots were rewarded for their performance on the diamond as four starters were selected to the all-Southeastern Conference team that was published this week.
Senior Cross Holfert, senior Justin Bowers, junior Donta Green and sophomore Nicholas Charleson were all recognized by the league as the foursome helped Scotland win 16 games and place second in the SEC regular-season standings. Holfert, an outfielder and pitcher, is a repeat all-SEC performer, as is the shortstop Green.
Scotland ended the year with a 16-9 overall record and a 7-3 mark in conference play, one game behind regular-season champion Richmond Senior. The Scots were forced to travel for the first round of the North Carolina High School Athletic Association 4A playoffs after Pinecrest won the conference tournament title, and their season ended in Matthews after a 5-4 defeat to Butler.
Pinecrest’s Nik Pry scored conference Player of the Year honors, and Richmond head coach Ricky Young was tabbed the SEC’s Coach of the Year.
The Raiders led the SEC schools with six all-conference selections — Jonathan Lee, Chase Haywood, Nick Honeycutt, Dalton Leviner, Bryce Dixon and Corey Dove.
Richmond, which was 20-8 overall and 8-2 in league play, advanced to the third round of the state playoffs before falling to Butler, 3-2.
In addition to Pry, Seth Caddell and Jack Carpenter were Pinecrest’s all-SEC representatives. The Patriots (20-9, 6-4 SEC) tied for third in the conference regular-season standings, but they ended the year strong winning three games in three days to claim the SEC tournament championship.
Pinecrest was also victorious in its first-round playoff game, but was ousted in its ensuing contest by North Davidson, 12-2.
Matthias Carter, McKinley Strickland, Lucas Oxendine and Matt Strickland were selected from Purnell Swett, which appeared in the opening round of the playoffs after posting an 18-8 overall record with a 6-4 mark in league play.
The Rams showcased the depth of the SEC by cruising past Richmond in the SEC tourney semifinals, but Purnell Swett ended its year with back-to-back losses which included a 11-4 drubbing at the hands of Pine Forest in the first round of the playoffs.
Lumberton (10-13, 3-7) placed three on the all-conference list — Evan Odum, Alec Brewington and Daniel Carter.
Hoke (2-19, 0-10) had one player earn all-SEC honors in Jacob Rushing.
Logan Martinez can be reached at 910-506-3170. Follow him on Twitter @L_Martinez13.