CFNN Staff Report

Cape Fear’s Boys Basketball season came to an end last night, as the Colts fell to United 8 Conference foe 71st in the second round of the NCHSAA State Playoffs 76-65.

The Colts fought hard, but their best efforts just weren’t enough. The Falcons were hot from the start and played at the top of their game, going up early with some easy layups. 71st did not look back from there, cruising to a big playoff victory.

Cape Fear erased the early deficit with some hot shooting of their own, hoofing it back to within three points with two minutes to go in the second quarter. Unfortunately, a big Falcon run late in the first half put the Colts down seven points at the break.

With some halftime adjustments, the Colts came out in a zone to start the second half in an attempt to stifle the hot shooting Falcons. This adjustment resulted in some great defensive stops early in the third quarter, but the ball never seemed to bounce toward the gold jerseys. 

71st snagged several loose balls on the offensive end and converted those into some big baskets early in the third. These baskets put the game out of reach for the Colts, as the Falcons went up by as much as 14 in the third quarter.

“We played tough even when we got down,” said Junior Guard Masaun Bryant. “We still fought back and tried to come back late in the game. We never thought it was over.”

The Colts would not go quietly, though. Regardless of the score, Cape Fear continued to play their trademark physical, tough defense. This kept them within striking distance until late in the fourth quarter.

“I think we can do big things next year,” said Bryant. “We have a good team coming back even though we are losing some good seniors.We still have enough pieces to do something big next year.”

It was a tough night for Cape Fear, who came in with high expectations after splitting games with the Conference Champs in the regular season. As the Colts close out the season, we say goodbye to seniors RJ McDonald and Justin Burden. The two seniors were huge contributors to the Cape Fear basketball program.

“I’m going to remember Coach Kee being a great coach and coaching us to our best, take care of our responsibilities on the court and in life, and pushing our ability to just do great on the court and in the classroom,” said McDonald.

“I am going to miss my teammates, having fun with the team and just playing basketball in general,” said Burden. I’ll miss having Coach Kee as my coach.”

Although the season didn’t completely live up to the team’s expectations, they still have plenty to be proud of. Colt nation is proud of our basketball team!