10/07/05 — Goldsboro invited to GlaxoSmithKline tourney

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Goldsboro invited to GlaxoSmithKline tourney

By Gabe Whisnant
Published in Sports on October 7, 2005 2:08 PM

Goldsboro's boys basketball team didn't finish the 2004 season with the kind of record, 11-13, that many expected, and the Cougars were denied a Class 3-A N.C. High School Athletic Association playoff berth for the second straight year.

Still, there was no denying Goldsboro's potential.

Representatives from one of the most prestigious holiday tournaments on the east coast -- the GlaxoSmithKline Invitational -- agreed when they came to see the Cougars last season. Recently, it was confirmed that Goldsboro will compete in the four-team tournament on Dec. 27-29 at Reynolds Coliseum on the campus of N.C. State.

"Our record wasn't all we wanted it to be, but they saw the potential and talent, and thought we just needed another year to grow and mature as a team," Goldsboro coach Randy Jordan said. "They contacted us and liked what they saw. They knew we were junior-oriented and extended the invitation.

"We're honored and excited for the opportunity. Not just for the kids and the program, but for our school and community."

Jordan's juniors include a pair of highly-recruited, potential Division I players, Daquan Joyner (6-7) and Tim Kornegay (6-2) along with fellow junior point guard Eric McLean. Sophomore Joe Houpe and freshman Tim Hobbs, who could get a shot at varsity, lead a solid corps of underclassmen.

"We're excited about Daquan and Tim. They'll be a big part of what we do on and off the court," Jordan said. "We're excited about this group of kids."

Joining Goldsboro in the four-team field are Statesville Christian, Seattle Prep (Wa.) and Christian Brothers (Lincroft, NJ).

Kinston's boys, coached by Wells Gulledge, will battle in the separate, eight-team field. Giving the Invitational even more local flavor, Wake Forest-Rolesville, coached by Goldsboro graduate Chris Kennedy, was invited to the four-team girls tournament.

"We'll have our hands full with any one of the three. They are all nationally known, well-respected and well-coached," Jordan said. "I talked to Wells over at Kinston and will take his advice. We'll prepare like we normally do as we do as a team. We're not going to get much scouting on the teams.

"We'll just lay it on the line and represent the city and school the best we can."

Goldsboro had to overcome an obstacle before getting the chance to play in Raleigh.

The Cougars, Rosewood, East Wake and Durham School of the Arts were scheduled to play in the annual Cougar Classic, slated for Dec. 27 and 28 at Goldsboro High. Rosewood agreed to move the tournament to their home gym as Wayne Country Day moved into the Cougars' spot in the tournament. On top of that, Charles B. Aycock agreed to reschedule a game with WCDS to accommodate the situation.

"We're gracious for C.B. Aycock, Wayne Country Day and Rosewood," Jordan said. "It says a lot about Wayne County basketball, and the relationships between coaches, athletics directors and principals. We're hoping this will be beneficial for the entire county."

The girls side of the Cougar Classic will still be hosted by Goldsboro.

The Cougars should get solid preparation for the GlaxoSmithKline by participating in a two-day, Thanksgiving tournament at Mount Olive College with Kinston, Clayton and East Chapel Hill.

"We will have played on the big floor twice at Mount Olive before we go to Raleigh. We are hoping that will acclimate us a little bit more," Jordan said. "It's N.C. state and a big time arena, but we'll tell them the old line from "Hoosiers," 'the baskets are 10 feet just like our gym.'"