by Chris Hunt

On Nov. 17, Hopewell High School three-sport standout Michael Russell signed his National Letter of Intent to play baseball at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Russell has lettered three times in football, twice in basketball and three times in baseball. This fall, he led the Titan football team with five interceptions from his safety position. He returns to baseball this spring after missing his entire junior season with a broken leg.

Strickland to become a Bulldog

Hopewell senior infielder Cody Strickland has committed to play baseball in for Pitt Community College in Greenville, North Carolina.

Pitt Community College reached the National Junior College Athletic Association World Series last season. As a junior, Strickland batted .365 with a .440 on-base average for the Titans. He also scored 23 runs and drove in 21 RBIs in 23 games.

SouthLake Christian athletes head to Oasis Shrine game this week

The 2010 Oasis All-Star Shrine Classic will be played Friday, Nov. 26, at Charlotte Country Day School at 1 p.m., and the sixth annual football game between private-school players from North and South Carolina will feature a pair of Lake Norman-area products.

SouthLake Christian’s Travis Hallman, a receiver, and Sam Remick, a quarterback/defensive back, will compete on the North Carolina roster.

Charlotte Country Day, Charlotte Latin and Providence Day schools have three players each on the North Carolina roster.

Quarterback Morgan Roberts leads the Charlotte Country Day contingent and is joined by fellow Bucs Wade Hamilton, a wide receiver, and Ward Showalter, an offensive lineman. Sam Spence, Colton Walls and Andrew Cooney will represent Charlotte Latin. Providence Day’s running back Joshua Covington, linebacker Robert Stack and offensive tackle Alan Marshall made the all-star event, as did Charlotte Christian wide receiver Simms McElfresh.

Other Mecklenburg County players include Victory Christian wide receiver Jonathan Bridges.

Bojangles’ Shootout field set

The Hopewell High School girls basketball team will be in the field for the 11th annual Bojangles’ High School Shootout.

The Bojangles’ Shootout is scheduled for Dec. 28-30 at Charlotte’s Bojangles’ Coliseum with 16 teams participating in three tournament games over the three-day period.

In addition to the Titans, who won the Bojangles’ title last year, the girls bracket includes Berry, Mallard Creek, Vance, Victory Christian, Gastonia Forestview, Concord High and South Pointe (South Carolina) High.

The boys field includes South Mecklenburg, Berry Academy, Mallard Creek, Northside Christian Academy, Victory Christian Center, Mooresville High, Lancaster (South Carolina) High and A.C. Flora (South Carolina) High.

Single-day tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students with valid identification. Three-day passes are $33 for adults and $27 for students. Pricing includes parking.

A portion of the tournament proceeds will benefit Charlotte Mecklenburg Middle School Athletic Scholarships.

Indoor track to be held outdoors

The North Carolina High School Athletic Association Board of Directors will hold the 2011 NCHSAA indoor track and field championships at an outdoor facility. The board hasn’t chosen an alternate site as of yet, but construction on the University of North Carolina campus rendered the Eddie Smith Field House, the traditional venue for the indoor championship, unavailable for event competition this year.

All CMS high schools will have trainers

Certified athletic trainers will be placed in all Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools high schools over the next five years under an agreement between CMS and Carolinas HealthCare System. The athletic trainers, who will be CHS employees, will be nationally certified and state-licensed, and will direct efforts to protect the health and safety of student athletes in all sports.

“This is a remarkable opportunity for us to ensure that our student-athletes are receiving the best care while they take part in sports,” CMS Superintendent Peter C. Gorman said in a prepared statement. “We are very fortunate to have Carolinas Medical Center and Carolinas Healthcare Systems as partners, and we thank them for helping us keep athletics safe for participants.”

Three CMS high schools have used a certified athletic trainer this year: South Mecklenburg, Berry Academy and East Mecklenburg. Additional trainers will be added each year until 2015, when all CMS high schools are expected to have a certified trainer.

Davidson Day football gives back

On Nov. 20, the Davidson Day football program delivered more than 200 toothbrushes, 65 tubes of toothpaste and nearly 40 packages of deodorant, along with shampoos, conditioners, lotions, to the ADA Jenkins Center for families in need for the holiday season. Players also donated their time to clean up the playground, put down mulch and pick up trash.