Enquirer Herald

Cougars pounce for leads

YORK -- Drew Harper is quietly assuming a leadership role in his third season with the York Comprehensive High boys basketball team.

The senior guard sees a lot of potential on this year's roster.

"We are a young team with real good talent," said Harper prior to a practice in the place they call the Dome.

Harper sounds like a coach when he talks about what it takes to be successful on the court.

"It's a matter of putting it all together," he said. "It requires thinking on the court and playing under control with no turnovers."

Harper said it's his time to step up like others before him.

"Senior leadership means getting everybody involved in the program and doing the right things," he said. "The younger players need to know that there's no goofing off at practice or in the classroom. Academic performance is a big deal to our coaches."

Harper is rotating with sophomore shooting guard Jerry Holmes off the wing. "Our goal is to make some noise in the region this season," he noted.

The Cougars made some noise in last weekend's Fort Mill Preseason Tournament, defeating the host Yellow Jackets 57-55, with four players scoring in double figures.

Three sophomores, Brandon Hagins, Jerry Holmes and Zach Sharp, dot the starting lineup, along with senior starters Ben Kennon and Harper.

Hagins, who had a double-double (points and rebounding) against Fort Mill, was named to the all-tournament team.

Cougar head coach Kendall McCarter has been pleased with the overall effort and defensive play in the early-season games.

Said McCarter, "Our young players are making some mistakes and committing fouls, but their play has been terrific."

McCarter is counting on a demanding non-region schedule that includes Chester, Lancaster, Rock Hill and South Pointe, to have the Cougars battle-tested when play begins in Region 3-AAAA.

McCarter said the Cougars will continue to play an up tempo game, applying pressure defense from the outset.

The Cougars game against Chester, originally set for Friday, was moved to tonight since the Cyclones' football team is in the state championship game this weekend.

A highlight of holiday season play will include participation in the annual Farm Bureau Classic Dec. 29-31, with details to be announced later this month.