Cooper Hench: Last week, Hench was chosen the National Club Pitcher of the Week after he threw two scoreless innings for the N.C. State club team against Campbell. In that stint, Hench struck out all six batters he faced. The Wolfpack won both games over the Camels. While his younger brother has started his career at North Carolina, Hench has played for the N.C. State club team since graduated from Orange in 2020.
Joey Berini: On Friday, Berini opened his senior season with East Carolina. The Pirates had a weekend sweep of Rider at Clarke-LeClair Stadium in Greenville. Berini started all three games at shortstop. On Sunday, he went 1-for-4 in ECU’s 7-0 win. On Saturday, ECU won 7-0 and Berini went 1-for-4 once again. The Pirates won the season-opener 16-2 on Friday. Berini went 1-for-3. ECU has opened the year ranked #11 in the country by D1Baseball.com.
Dante DeFranco:After reaching the NCAA Tournament last year, the Charlotte 49ers started its season against Virginia Tech at Hayes Stadium this weekend. DeFrano served as a pinch-hitter for the 49ers in its 10-0 loss to the Hokies on Friday. DeFranco had a single in his only at-bat with a stolen base. DeFranco started in right field in Virginia Tech’s 10-5 win on Saturday. He went 0-for-2. On Sunday, the 49ers salvaged a game in the series with a 10-5 win. DeFranco drove in a run with a pinch-hit single in the 7th inning.
Jackson Berini: Gaston College swept a weekend series Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute over the weekend. Caldwell is the #5 ranked Division III team in the country in the National Junior College Athletic Association. Berini played in Sunday’s win as a pinch-runner.
Davis Horton: The Rockingham Community College Eagles are 1-9 to start the season. This weekend, USC Lancaster swept two doubleheaders against Rockingham. Horton started the second game of the doubleheader on Saturday, a 11-3 win for the Lancers. Horton went 0-for-3, starting at catcher. Horton also started on Sunday, a 10-6 win by the Lancers. Horton went 0-for-3. Last week, Montgomery College swept a doubleheader from the Eagles. Horton went 1-for-4 in a 10-8 loss to the Mustangs. Horton also played as a pinch-hitter in the opening game, which Montgomery won 9-5.
Ryan Hench: The former Orange High pitcher started his career with the #15 North Carolina baseball team on Friday. The Tar Heels swept Wagner at Boshamer Stadium in Chapel Hill. Hench helped the Panthers win three straight conference championships in his Orange career. His freshman year was interrupted due to the pandemic after four games.
Aidan McCallister: After a year at Hofstra University, the former Cedar Ridge 1st baseman transferred to Brunswick Community College. He is now a redshirt freshman and teammates with former Northern Durham pitcher Matthew Lombard.
Chase Finley: The Division II Shorter University lacrosse team has started the season in strong fashion. The Hawks defeated Oglethorpe 12-10 on February 1 in Atlanta. Finley, a former Cedar Ridge goalkeeper, earned the win making 13 saves. Shorter edged Tennessee Wesleyan 13-12 at Ben Brady Field in Rome, GA. Finley made 15 saves to take the win. On Wednesday, Shorter defeated Montreat 11-3 at Pulliam Stadium in Montreat. Finley made 12 saves for the win. Finley finished with 14 saves as the Hawks defeated Centenary College 9-6 on February 12. The only loss for Shorter so far was a 21-17 loss to Malone University on February 10. Finley started in net and made 17 saves.
Cy Horner: The Division III Methodist men’s lacrosse team started its season with a 12-8 loss to Goucher at Monarch Stadium in Fayetteville. Horner, a sophomore, scored the first goal of the season for the Monarchs. Horner had seven shots, four of them on goal, with one ground ball. Methodist with travel to Virginia Wesleyan University in Virginia Beach, VA on Tuesday.
Josiah Tisdale: Tisdale, who was a member of the Orange men’s lacrosse team the past four years, started his college career at Methodist.
Tigh Metheney: The former Orange lacrosse midfielder is already playing in his freshman season for Division II Catawba College. In the Indians 16-11 win over North Greenville, Methane saw playing time in the season-opener. Methane also played in Catawba’s 9-7 win over Belmont-Abbey at Alumni Field in Belmont on Saturday. Catawba will travel to Tusculum on Saturday.
Nick Cardone: Cardone, a key defensive presence for Orange lacrosse the past four years, is also a freshman for Catawba College.