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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
By Brian Bailey

Prep teams relish limelight in Greenville


It’s that time of the year again! The Eastern Regionals in high school basketball return to Greenville this week.

It’s the 16th straight year that Greenville has hosted the state quarterfinals and semifinals.

Each year, coaches rave about the facilities at East Carolina, and about how their individual teams look forward to the trip — if they can get through the sectionals.

Many of the coaches and administrators from the schools have East Carolina University roots.

Mike Gainey played tight end at East Carolina in the mid 80’s for Art Baker. Now, Gainey returns to his alma mater as the coach at Rocky Mount.

“I really look forward to the regional,” Gainey said. “Some of these folks saw me drop passes when I was here (laughing), so it’s great for me to come back so they can see me coach!”

The boys games will be played at Minges Coliseum's Williams Arena on the ECU campus. The girls games will be staged at J.H. Rose High School.

Former Lady Pirate standout Shay Hayes has her Farmville Central Jaguars back in the regionals. Hayes and her club, led by Megan and Kim Zullo, have been a fixture at these regionals for some time.

Games tip off tonight with doubleheaders each night at both sites. The Eastern Regional finals are set for all day on Saturday.

It truly is a great time of championship basketball in its purest form.

Keith LeClair Classic a winner

Chalk up another great weekend of baseball at East Carolina. The Keith LeClair Classic provided another outstanding tournament, with great games throughout the event.

N.C. State was the only unbeaten in the field, but the Wolfpack certainly got pushed.

East Carolina was 2-1 for the weekend, beating Penn State and UNC-Wilmington, but falling to Virginia Tech.

The Hokies banked on the scouting report and used a lefthander to handcuff the Pirates at the plate. East Carolina had better get used to seeing the southpaws, because that’s where teams are finding success against the Pirates.

It was great to see Coach LeClair for a brief time up in the press box. Communication is difficult, but hopefully the coach knows that he and his family our always in our thoughts and prayers.

Isn’t it amazing that Coach LeClair’s wife, Lynn, keeps a smile on her face all the time. She is truly a remarkable person. Also, J.D. and Audrey did a nice job with the ceremonial first pitch.

The great folks at the Catfish Hunter Chapter of the ALS Association were also on hand, taking donations. That group also announced that this year’s Walk to d’Feet ALS will be held on September 30th, with an entirely new route for the walkers.

Both the baseball and softball teams at East Carolina, as well as many other Pirate athletes, help to make the “Walk” a great fundraiser for our community.

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02/23/2007 01:33:30 AM


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