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Today's Sports

  • From suits to shades, Swofford...

    The beach was a late discovery for this man who grew up in the shadow of the mountains.

    Now Ocean Isle Beach is his retreat, his refuse, his revival.

    John Swofford comes to Brunswick County to slip the bonds and pressures of being Atlantic Coast Conference commissioner and Bowl Championship Series (BCS) coordinator.

    “You come over that bridge and see the island and the ocean out in front of you, and it’s like you’re entering another world,” Swofford said.

  • Gator Senior Games announces...

    The 20th annual Brunswick County Gator Senior Games had competitions last week in track and field events, bowling, golf, tennis, swimming and cycling. Winners were:

    Cycling (1 mile): Women 55-59, Janice Ammann 3:39.84. Men 75-79, John Beddow 4:43.50.

    Cycling (5K): Women 55-59, Ammann, 10:59.62. Men 75-79, Beddow 15:14.65.

    Cycling (10K): Women 55-59, Ammann 21:18.00. Men 75-79, Beddow 30:28.00.

  • West comes from behind to post...

    SHALLOTTE—Seth Roberts had done everything but score.

    So, in the decisive sixth inning, when Roberts stole third and watched teammate Ryan Hill burn the New Hanover left fielder for a double, Roberts didn’t have to race home. He trotted.

    He stopped just before his mission was accomplished, jumped joyously and came down with both feet on the plate.

    It was the human exclamation point in a 15-8 victory that clinched the Mideastern 3A/4A Conference championship Thursday night.

  • Know your NASCAR; it's...

    It is an awful feeling, and in the manner of grim surprises since the beginning of time, you never see it coming.

    I was having a casual conversation over lunch the other day about fairly nebulous NASCAR topics—what I would consider general-knowledge questions. We discussed the NASCAR Sprint Cup season so far, the next few races, the Chase, what in the world Tony Stewart will ultimately decide to do, anything and everything about Dale Earnhardt Jr.—in other words, the usual.

  • Bowyer takes victory after...

    RICHMOND, Va.—Bizarre might be a good description of Saturday night’s Cup race at Richmond International Raceway.

    Polesitter Denny Hamlin led a race-record number of 381 laps.

    Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kyle Busch provided a few laps of great racing for the lead, a battle that ended with Earnhardt being spun out by Busch on Lap 398.

    And that led to Clint Bowyer getting by both Earnhardt and Busch, en route to his second career win in Cup competition.

  • McCumbee sixth at The Rock

    Brunswick County’s Chad McCumbee finished sixth in the Carolina 500 last Sunday in the return to racing at Rockingham Speedway after a four-year hiatus.

    “That was okay for us,” said McCumbee, who grew up in Varnamtown. “We didn’t have the car as good as we’d like to. It kind of made it a struggle all day. The caution never fell the way we needed it to.

    “They started 50 cars. So we’ll take a sixth place—that was a good, solid finish for us.”

  • Thoughts just popping up

    I usually like to tunnel-vision, but today thoughts are jumping around as if my brain is a popcorn machine.

    •Ty Lawson, the University of North Carolina point guard, was quicker than anybody else in the ACC this past season. Everybody else was on play, and he was running on fast-forward.

    I can’t wait to see a match-up between Lawson and Allen Iverson, who is the quickest basketball player I’ve ever seen in person.

  • Pier fishing still has its charm...

    Fishing piers are a sacred thing to saltwater anglers, and Brunswick County is blessed to still have them in operation.

    Elsewhere on the coast, the piers are disappearing, but here there is still a chance for folks to cast off the planks and maybe fill up a cooler. Many people came to the sport as kids on an ocean pier, and even if you like to take a big boat out to the bluewater these days, it is always nice to get back to your roots.

  • Fishing action heats up with...

    The fishing has taken a dramatic turn for the better this past week.

    As is typically the case, we fishermen wait and wait, and then finally something/someone throws the switch, and the fish are magically here.

    The fact last week’s weather was stable and warm certainly didn’t hurt, and it offered fishermen a chance to get out and work on the fish.

  • Golf: The greatest game for...

    I love the Grand Strand of the Carolina coast with its 100-plus golf courses spread like green jewels along the lakes, inlets and waterways of the low country.

    This is a very fine golf resort. The best part is I, as a woman, can play any time I want. I can play golf Saturday mornings, Sunday mornings. I can also tee off between the hours of noon and 2 p.m.

    What about Wednesday, the historical “doctor’s day” at the course?

    No problem here.

    A men-only grill and bar?

    Naahhhh, not here.