Prep Notebook: Riverside star Justice Kithcart transfers to Hillside
Riverside High School basketball star Justice Kithcart has transferred to Hillside High School, Hillside and Riverside coaches confirmed Friday at East Chapel Hill’s “Jammin’ on the Hill” summer basketball tournament.
Kithcart’s father, James, who played basketball at Hillside in the 1980s, said his son, a point guard, transferred to take advantage of Hillside’s International Baccalaureate academic program. IB is not offered at Riverside and Justice Kithcart took part in the IB program at Shepard Middle School, before moving on to Riverside.
Hillside coach Crasten Davis and Riverside coach Brian Strickland both confirmed the transfer.
Kithcart, who already has a college scholarship offer from Clemson, should provide an immediate boost to the Hillside backcourt, which lost regular point guards D’Ontray Johnson and De’Shon Self to graduation.
Hillside returns its top low-post threat in junior Malik Evans and is expected to feature young players Timothy Mangum and Marcus Bowling in the regular rotation.
GONE, YET NOT GONE
East Chapel Hill athletic director Ray Hartsfield learned Thursday that his girls’ soccer coach, Jared Drexler, had accepted the boys’ head coach position at Carrboro High School, replacing the departed Mark Kadlecik.
Despite the new job, Drexler will not be leaving East Chapel Hill, Hartsfield said Friday. Like his close friend Kadlecik before him, Drexler will remain as head girls’ coach at East while coaching the Carrboro boys.
Kadlecik, who won a girls’ 3-A state title at East in 2004, coached the Carrboro boys as well until taking over the Carrboro girls’ program in 2012 and
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leaving former ECH aide Drexler to coach the East girls’ last season.
Kadlecik coached the Carrboro girls’ and boys’ teams last season and Drexler was an assistant on Kadlecik’s Carrboro boys’ coaching staff.
Carrboro still has an opening for a girls’ soccer coach.
Crasten Davis said Friday junior big man Emanuel McGirt will not return to the basketball team this season. McGirt, a potential major college recruiting target as an offensive tackle, has decided to concentrate on football.
Davis said he’s unsure whether dual-sports star Trevion Thompson will return to the basketball team for his senior season. Thompson is one of the top wide receiver prospects in the nation and, like McGirt, may focus on football this year.
On the other side, Davis said former fulltime basketball players Malik Evans and Timothy Mangum will double-down and play football for the first time this fall.
VERY PROUD DAD
Hillside’s Davis welcomed six-pound, 11-ounce daughter Cyniah Collier Davis at 12:25 a.m., June 14. Asked Friday how he’s been sleeping since then, he could only shake his head.
It’s unclear if she’ll play point or shooting guard.
— Staff writer John McCann contributed to this report.