BEAUFORT — The  Mariners passed what may have been their last big test of the regular season Friday in their matchup with Southwest Onslow.

The Stallions trailed East Carteret by a game in the 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference baseball standings entering the contest but a five-run fifth inning gave the home team its ninth consecutive win in a 5-1 affair.

The Mariners (10-4) moved to 9-1 in the league while ending Southwest Onslow’s five-game winning streak. The Stallions (10-4) dropped to 7-3 in the conference. Dixon (7-6) is also 7-3 in the Coastal 8.

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HOLLY RIDGE — The Croatan baseball team only needed six innings to shut down Dixon 16-5 on the road Thursday.

The Cougars (5-9 overall) improved to 4-6 in the 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference with the win. Dixon moved to 7-6 overall and 7-3 in league play.

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BEAUFORT — The odds seemed stacked against the East Carteret girls soccer team on Friday against Southwest Onslow.

The Mariners were without two players, another one was injured, they were coming off a big loss and the Stallions were riding a four-game winning streak.

The Beaufort club overcame those odds to hold off Southwest Onslow in a 3-2 tilt and set a school record for wins. East is now 13-4 after capturing its eighth victory in its last nine games. The Mariners won 12 games on two occasions, going 12-6 in 2014 and 12-7-1 in 2015.

The club is 9-2 in the 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference and has now swept all three traditionally strong 2A Onslow County programs in the league in Dixon, Richlands and Southwest Onslow. The Stallions (8-6) are 6-4 in the league.

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HOLLY RIDGE — The Croatan girls soccer team hit the road Thursday for another dominant 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference victory.

The Cougars (14-2 overall) trounced Dixon 6-0 to improve to 11-0 in league play. The Ocean team, ranked No. 3 in the 2A classification by MaxPreps.com, has won 14 straight since starting the season 0-2.

With the win over Dixon (5-9 overall, 3-6 conference), Croatan kept up a two-game lead in the Coastal 8 over East Carteret (9-2). It will have a chance to secure its first league title since 2014 with a trip to Southwest Onslow (6-4) on Tuesday.

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BEAUFORT — The Mariners needed a win in the worst kind of way Friday versus Southwest Onslow and they got one.

The East Carteret softball team snapped a five-game slide that had covered 21 days with a 10-3 victory over the Stallions.

East’s last win came versus these same Stallions, earning a 13-6 triumph on March 22.

The Beaufort squad had been competitive in most of the games during the five-game losing streak, dropping four of those contests by a total of seven runs.

The Mariners are now 10-7 overall and 6-5 in the 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference. And even with their recent slide, a first-place finish in the league is not entirely out of reach.

Five teams rank ahead of them in the conference but it’s a tight bunch. Richlands (9-5) leads the Coastal 8 at 7-2. Pender (11-4) is next at 7-3 followed by Dixon (6-6) at 6-3, Croatan (7-8) at 7-4 and Trask (7-8) at 6-4.

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HOLLY RIDGE — The Croatan softball team’s propensity for close games continued Thursday with a 13-10 loss to Dixon on the road.

The Cougars (7-8 overall) were coming off three straight wins, including 4-2 over Richlands on April 4, 12-11 over Pender on Monday and 4-3 over East Carteret on Tuesday. They moved to 7-4 in the 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference with the loss.

The Cougars are in fourth place in league play, now a half-game behind Dixon (6-6 overall, 6-3 conference). Richlands (7-2) and Pender (7-2) are currently leading the conference standings.

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NEWPORT — The East Carteret boys tennis team defeated Southwest Onslow 7-2 at home on Thursday.

The Mariners (6-7 overall) improved to 2-3 in the 1A/2A Coastal 8 Conference with the win. Southwest Onslow slipped to 0-8 overall and 0-5 in league play.

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HAVELOCK — After three months with a vacant position, the Havelock football program finally has a head coach.

The Rams made it official Friday, hiring Allen Wooten from Greene Central.

Caleb King, who previously spent two years as the East Carteret head coach, left Havelock in mid-January. King took the head coaching position at Easley High School in Easley, S.C.

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(For complete stories of these briefs, see the newsstand and home delivery edition or the full online e-edition.)

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