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Prep Update; Martinsville is up next

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Baseball

East Rutherford (6-2, 5-2) came back to get past R-S Central 2-1. Kendall McGowan (East) and Dillon Phillips (Central) pitched stellar games, but it was an Adam Barnette RBI single that pushed East ahead for good in the first of at least two meetings this season between the county rivals last week.

Despite the loss, R-S Central (7-2, 5-2) is still among the best in SMAC play as they fight for the one seed among the 2A teams as they now trail East in the head-to-head match up at this moment.

Chase is still winless at this point and lost a 2-1 heart-breaker to East Burke last week. Thomas Jefferson has one win so far on the year and that is against Piedmont Community Charter.

Softball

R-S Central (9-2, 6-1) downed East Rutherford 11-1. Central went 2-1 on the week and lost to a very tough East Burke team. Maybe it was a much needed wake up call. Central had three home games this coming week. They end the week with Shelby in town on 3/31.

Chase (3-4, 2-4) continues to fight, but have now lost four in a row. They will host Burns on Friday, 3/31.

East Rutherford (4-4, 2-4) young bunch lost all three games last week and their next home game isn't until April 4th against East Burke.

Thomas Jefferson has just one win and that was over Piedmont Community Charter on March 15th.

Girls Soccer

East Rutherford (4-2-1, 4-1) tough early schedule has proved that they are no fluke. East continues to get better every game as they beat R-S Central 4-0 last week. Emily Elgin and Abby Smith continue to pace a potent offense for East.

R-S Central (5-4, 3-4) is going through some injury issues, but if they can get all that worked out, they should be a force to reckon with during the second half of the season.

Thomas Jefferson (7-2, 6-2) had won four in a row, but faced an outstanding Community School of Davidson program earlier in the week. The Lady Gryphons won't be home again until April 19th when they face MIC.

Scoring has been the issue for Chase (1-6-1, 1-5-1) so far this season. Defensively, they held the top scoring offense in the SMAC to just three goals last week, but Chase has scored just three goals all year. They have given up more than three goals just once so far this season.

Final Four

It will be South Carolina-Gonzaga and Oregon-UNC. What a weird combination? For I have no dog in the fight perspective, I like UNC all the way now as Oregon is still missing a key player to injury. The 'Zags and Gamecocks are both playing poised and with a chip on their shoulders. If UNC can stay out of foul trouble, they will be fine. It depends on which team plays better defense as to who the Tarheels will face.

NASCAR: Martinsville

Well, it's that time of the year. The first week of April and all of NASCAR congregates at the half-mile in Martinsville. Kyle Busch, in the spring and Jimmie Johnson, in the fall won last year.

One would think that Joey Logano is due to win at Martinsville, but he has too many enemies and Kyle Busch may not play around this weekend. It sounds like fun to me.

Jimmie Johnson has struggled at times this year. This might be the weekend that he has been waiting for to change all that around.

Denny Hamlin is just as big of a threat as anybody with teammates Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth doing much better over the last couple of seasons at the .526-mile facility.

I will throw A.J. Allmedinger, Martin Truex and Jamie McMurray in as underdogs.

Although, he has a backup crew chief, Brad Keselowski is going to finally win at Martinsville. Kez, has been close with two seconds and a fifth in three of the last four at Martinsville.

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