TeamFYNSports Writer’s Player of the Week- Peyton McCraken, no. 3

Murphy Bulldogs, Player of the Week, TeamFYNSports

Peyton McCracken was a force to be reckoned with in the Bulldogs game against Life Christian Academy. For this effort, he is the TeamFYNSports Writer’s Player of the Week for the Murphy Bulldogs!

On the first play of the Bulldogs’ first possession, quarterback Kellen Rumfelt connected with Peyton for a 72 yard touchdown pass! This score gave the Bulldogs an early lead of 6-0. Peyton would score twice more throughout the game after catching passes from Rumfelt.

Congratulations to Peyton McCracken- the TeamFYNSports Writer’s Player of the Week in the game against Life Christian Academy!

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Rumfelt to McCracken too much for Life Christian Academy

Murphy Bulldogs, Team FYN Sports

A special report by the voice of the Murphy Bulldogs- J.R. Carroll!

On the first play of Murphy’s first possession, Murphy quarterback, Kellen Rumfelt, rolled out and found Peyton McCracken for a 72 yard. With 8:54 left in the game Murphy led 6-0 as the extra point attempt was wide. 

Rumfelt and McCracken would connect two more times before the night was through, leading Murphy to a 45-28 win over a very talented group of athletes from Life Christian Academy. 

Murphy quarterback Kellen Rumfelt rolls out for a touchdown pass. Image credit: hudl

Late in the first quarter LCA took advantage of a Murphy fumble and struck on a 7 yard touchdown with a minute left. The two point conversion failed and the score was tied at 6-6 at the end of the first. 

Murphy didn’t let it stay that way long. With only two minutes gone in the second quarter, Ray Rathburn hit paydirt from 10 yards out. Devonte Murray added a two point conversion to take a 14-7 lead. LCA didn’t take long to tie it up with two pass plays, the last being a 21 yard touchdown pass. 

LCA added another two point conversion to tie it again at 14-14 with 8 minutes to go in the first half. Murphy followed that up with a one yard sneak by Rumfelt with 5 minutes to go in half. Two point conversion failed and Murphy led 20-14. LCA scored two minutes later with a 19 yard pass. They missed on their two point conversion and the score was again tied at 20-20.

Murphy had seen enough of the lead changes and took the lead for good with two minutes to go in the half when Rumfelt and McCraken connected again for a 6 yard touchdown pass. Point attempt was good and Murphy led 27-20 at the half.

A Murphy Bulldogs receiver takes it to the house. Image credit: hudl

Murphy took the opening kick of the second half and Devonte Murray, who rushed for 15 times for 124 yards on the night, got 50 plus of those yards to set the Dogs up for their first score of the second half. A couple of plays later the Rumfelt to McCraken connection hit paydirt again from 12 yards out. The conversion failed and Murphy led 33-20. 

The Dogs never relinquished the lead again. Ray Rathburn, who was the leading rusher for the Dogs with 153 yards, scored from 55 yards out later in the third. LCA’s lone second half score came with a 6 yard run for touchdown and a two point conversion to bring the score to Murphy 39, LCA 28. Devonte Murray would seal the deal when he had a three yard touchdown late in the third to net the final Murphy 45, LCA 28.

Rumfelt finished the night with 5 completions for 9 attempts for 102 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for a touchdown. The Dogs had two 100 yard rushers- Rathburn and Murray.

Murphy opens Smoky Mountain Conference action this Friday night when they travel to Andrews. Kickoff 7:30 p.m.

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Bulldogs Fall to Christ School 27-7

Murphy Bulldogs, Sports, Team FYN Sports

The Murphy Bulldogs hung tough for three quarters of play against Christ School of Asheville, which we will now refer to as University of Christ School. Last week we talked about two different cultures meeting and the challenges that it cause each team to face. This week Murphy was in an unusual position for them. They found themselves on the short end of the stick. 

Christ School has the luxury of recruiting players from all over Western North Carolina and other states, by offering a college prep education to students who if they were not playing football would cost around $30,000 a year. The argument is heard loudest around metro areas where these schools are more prevalent, but it has now made its way to WNC.

A runner for a Murphy touchdown. Image credit: hudl

Teams with the same number of students as a 1A public school, boasting of six to eight D1 commits playing football. The attrition finally got to the Bulldogs midway through the fourth quarter.  Murphy trailed 14-7 midway through the fourth. The dogs had scored on their first possession and went up 7-0, when Murphy scored in two plays after a Rumfelt pass to Justice Dorset set up a 43 yard touchdown scamper by Devonte Murray for a Bulldog touchdown. 

Christ School’s passing game was held in check most of the night by the Bulldog defense, but Christ School running back Pierce Hammonds found running the ball much more productive. Hammonds set up the Greenies first touchdown with a long run down to the Murphy 9 yard line. Quarterback Navy Shuler found former Cherokee Brave, Cade Mintz, in the end zone for a touchdown.  Ayden White added the two point conversion and Christ School took the lead for good 8-7. 

Shuler’s passing game was pretty much held in check in the first half, limiting him to only 6 completions in 18 tries for 86 yards. Unfortunately for the Dogs they didn’t have an answer for Hammonds. After a long pass play that set Christ School up in the red zone, Hammonds hit pay dirt again from nine yards out and the point attempt was wide. Christ School led 14-0 to finish out the half. 

Hammonds put the game away for the Greenies. After two stops by the Murphy defense inside the red zone, Hammonds broke loose on his second touchdown of the night for a 33 yard run. Point attempt was good  and Christ School led 21-0. Wanting to add salt to the wound, Christ School added another touchdown late in the fourth on a 19 yard strike from Shuler to Ayden White. That was the final score- Christ School 27 Murphy 7.

Dogs will host Life Christian Academy next Friday at David Gentry Field in Murphy.

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Bulldogs begin 2019 season with tough win

Murphy Bulldogs, Murphy High, Sports, Team FYN Sports

Murphy, N.C. – A pair of tough touchdown runs and a stingy defense was the difference Friday night as the Murphy High football team knocked off Pisgah, 12-0, to open the 2019 campaign.

The defending 1A state-champion Bulldogs kept the visiting Bears out of the end zone, while senior running back Devonte Murray managed to force his way to two scores and secure the win for Murphy.

“I’ll take this win. I’d rather have an ugly win than a pretty loss,” Murphy head coach David Gentry said after the game. “We’ve been an offensive team since I’ve been here, but it just didn’t sync tonight, mainly because we were snapping so bad. It’s going to get better, it’ll just take a lot of snaps.”

Senior Brady Satterfield, who usually handles the snapping duties for the Bulldogs, is out with a knee injury, forcing Gentry to slide junior Dallas Rayburn from guard to center.

Despite a few miscues between Rayburn and sophomore quarterback Kellen Rumfelt, who fumbled the ball twice but managed to recover both, the Bulldogs were able to stay organized and come out with the win.

“We’ll be better next week,” Gentry said. “We’ve got to mix in some passes and stuff like that. We’re a young football team, and we are going to get better.”

Rumfelt only attempted three passes on the night, completing one to sophomore Payton McCracken for just one yard.

Murray, who finished the night with 149 yards on 18 carries, managed to break through late in the first half for the first of his two scores. The extra-point try was unsuccessful and the Bulldogs went into halftime with a 6-0 lead.

“(Murray) wouldn’t have scored that first touchdown if he wasn’t so strong,” Gentry said. “He was hit and should have probably went down, but he works hard in the weight room and he managed to fight through that and get in the end zone.”

With a 6-0 lead late in the game, Murray managed to spin his way into the end zone to put the Bulldogs up 12-0 with a minute left to go.

Murphy also benefitted from two forced turnovers as Rumfelt and junior Ray Rathburn each recovered fumbles on defense in the first half.

Rathburn also carried the ball 11 times for 37 yards, while adding an interception late in the game.

In a game that was played mostly near midfield, the Bulldogs received solid play along the offensive and defensive line, anchored by junior Yousef Mugharbil and senior Colby Stalcup.

Mugharbil, who is 6-foot-5 and more than 300 pounds, consistently put opposing lineman on their backs all night.

“He’s got seven or eight (scholarship) offers already from division-one schools,” Gentry said of Mugharbil. “So we expected him to play well, and he did.”

Mugharbil, along with several other players, battled cramps late in the game, but Gentry said that will be addressed during the upcoming week.

“They weren’t as in shape as they should be, and that’s my fault. Better hydration and better conditioning, and we’ll take care of that,” the coach said after the game.

Up next for Murphy is Franklin High. The Bulldogs won last season’s game 35-14 at home, but will travel to Franklin this season and Gentry expects the Panthers to be ready.

“It’s always been tough over there on us. We handled them pretty good last season, and I don’t think they appreciated that, so they’ll be ready for us,” Gentry said.

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Board approves temporary off-site fitness plan for Station 1 first responders

News

MURPHY, N.C. – The Cherokee County Board of Commissioners approved a temporary off-site fitness plan for on-duty emergency personnel at Station 1 at the board’s June 4 meeting.

The plan will now allow only Station 1 personnel to use nearby fitness centers at their own expense while on duty in an effort to improve health and strength of the emergency personnel and provide the best service to citizens, according to information provided by the Cherokee County Emergency Services.

As Chairman Dr. Dan Eichenbaum explained, “(The agreement) is only until they get a new facility. It has been shown this will not cause a delay in response time. Both truck workers must agree and only one truck at a time (may leave Station 1). This is to allow them because they do not have adequate space to work out in (at the station).”

Brian King, of the Cherokee County Emergency Medical Services (EMS), explained to commissioners there has been a “movement” within the department to work out and exercise to increase physical strength and improve job performance over the past five years, but limited space at Station 1 has disallowed its personnel from doing so.

According to information presented to the commissioners from EMS concerning response times for personnel at a fitness center, “Crews are very adept at being able to meet our required chute times during all situations. Any delay would no different than eating showering, using the restroom, being at the hospital, or sleeping.”

Commenting on the benefits of the plan, Commissioner Gary Westmoreland stated, “Personally, I would rather somebody healthy pick me up than somebody out of shape. And I think it’s good for them. It’s good for their morale.”

Commissioner C.B. McKinnon stated while he himself can see the benefits of the plan to the county’s emergency personnel, he is also concerned about public perception.

“I understand that we’ve been in this location for a lot of years and I don’t know what’s been done in the past … but the optics of it – the public just doesn’t understand it. We’ll have the other facility up soon, and for that reason, I’m just not willing to support it,” McKinnon explained.

Ultimately, the board approved the temporary plan 4-1, with McKinnon voting against.

The board also approved a contract with Turner & Company CPAs (certified public accountant) to conduct the county’s fiscal year 2017-18 audit in the amount of $44,900.

County Finance Officer Candy Anderson explained to the commissioners the cost of the audit is the second lowest among seven counties in western North Carolina.

“I checked with surrounding counties … and a lot of them are seeing 12 to 41 percent increases in their audit fees,” Anderson stated.

The contract was approved by the board unanimously.

A capital project ordinance for the phase 5 construction project at the Cherokee County Solid Waste facility in Marble was approved by the commissioners. The ordinance appropriates $2.5 million to the project for permitting, construction, engineering, and contingency funds. According to the ordinance, revenues from the general fund are anticipated to be available to complete the project.

The board approved a number of 2017-18 budget revisions including a revision in the total amount of $31,043 to allow the use of the restricted/designated school sales tax fund balance for various projects. The amount will cover the purchases of a generator replacement at Ranger Elementary School ($19,207), bus cameras and camera systems for five new buses ($4,925), fertilizer for Bermuda turf for the football fields at Andrews and Murphy high schools ($2,653), approximately 225 lbs. of refrigerant for a compressor at Hiwassee Dam School ($2,517), and diagnostic services from Trane ($1,741).

A budget revision in the amount of $800 was approved to transfer funds from the fund balance to the detention center trust account for legal settlements.

A budget revision in the amount of $94.14 was approved to cover half the cost of new carpeting at the Martins Creek Community Center. Previously, the board approved an amount of $261; however, actual costs for the carpeting came to $710.27, which increased the county’s half share to $355.14.

In other business, commissioners also voted to allow Lewis and Clark Circus to again use Heritage Park Sept. 22 and 23 of this year.

The board also voted to allow North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission law enforcement officers to enforce laws concerning spotlighting wildlife from the right-of-way of any public road, street, or highway.

A number of upcoming Board of Commissioners are slated for June. On June 21 and 25, the board will hold fiscal year 2018-19 budget work sessions in the boardroom of the Cherokee County Courthouse at 6:30 p.m. The Board of Commissioners next regularly scheduled meeting is set for June 18 at 6:30 p.m. In addition, the board will have a special called meeting June 28 at 6:30 p.m. to officially adopt the new county budget. All meetings are open to the public.

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

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Jason Beck

Born in Merrillville, Indiana, raised in Cleveland, Tennessee, and currently resides in Copperhill, Tennessee. Graduated from Bradley Central High School in 1996 and attended the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, eventually earning a B.A. and M.A. in English. Hobbies include hiking, camping and fly-fishing. Interests include baseball, hockey and cliff jumping.

Graham appears in Superior Court Tuesday

Cherokee County Schools, News

MURPHY, N.C. – Thomas Graham, the Murphy High School principal charged with two counts of indecent liberties with a student stemming from incidents occurring in January and February of 2016, appeared before Judicial District 30A Judge William H. Coward in Superior Court Tuesday, March 6, in Murphy.

On Tuesday, the next court date for Murphy High School Principal Thomas Graham was set for July 2.

Graham is represented by Murphy attorney Gerald R. Collins, and Judge Coward set Graham’s next court appearance for July 2.

Graham, 45, was indicted by a grand jury and arrested by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) Thursday, Feb. 8, and later released from the Cherokee County Detention Center on a $2,500 bond. According to the Cherokee County School System, the principal was suspended with pay Jan. 26, prior to the arrest. Since then, Jason Forrister has served as acting principal of Murphy High School.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

Author

Jason Beck

Born in Merrillville, Indiana, raised in Cleveland, Tennessee, and currently resides in Copperhill, Tennessee. Graduated from Bradley Central High School in 1996 and attended the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, eventually earning a B.A. and M.A. in English. Hobbies include hiking, camping and fly-fishing. Interests include baseball, hockey and cliff jumping.

Murphy High principal arrested, suspended amid allegations of misconduct

News

MURPHY, N.C. – According to a statement from Cherokee County (N.C.) Schools (CCS) issued Saturday morning, Feb. 10, Thomas Graham, principal of Murphy High School, has been suspended with pay from school duties in response to allegations of misconduct and Graham’s subsequent arrest Thursday, Feb. 8.

In the statement, Graham’s suspension came from CCS Jan. 26. “Mr. Jason Forrister has been acting principal during this time and will continue in that role as long as necessary,” CCS stated.

The statement from the school system continued to say:

“Cherokee County Schools has been working with local and state law enforcement agencies and has fully cooperated with their investigation. Because personnel matters are considered confidential under state law, CCS cannot make any further comment regarding Mr. Graham. Further it is imperative that CCS strive alongside law enforcement agencies to seek the truth and impart fairness to all parties involved … Student safety is the first priority of Cherokee County Schools and CCS takes the appropriate measures necessary to provide a welcoming and safe atmosphere for all students, staff, parents and volunteers. Cherokee County Schools would like to thank the state and local law enforcement officials for the professionalism they have demonstrated thus far. CCS will continue to work with law enforcement throughout the entire process.”

According to CCS, the law requires any suspension taking place during an investigation to be paid.

Graham, 45, was arrested by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) Thursday afternoon, Feb. 8, and later released from the Cherokee County Detention Center on a $2,500 bond.

According the booking report from CCSO, Graham is charged with two counts of indecent liberties with a student stemming from incidents occurring in January and February of 2016. Graham is scheduled to appear in Superior Court in Murphy March 5, at 9 a.m.

 

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

Author

Jason Beck

Born in Merrillville, Indiana, raised in Cleveland, Tennessee, and currently resides in Copperhill, Tennessee. Graduated from Bradley Central High School in 1996 and attended the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, eventually earning a B.A. and M.A. in English. Hobbies include hiking, camping and fly-fishing. Interests include baseball, hockey and cliff jumping.

Murphy Middle, Martins Creek Elementary will compete at FIRST Lego League State Championship

Cherokee County Schools, Swain County High School

 

CHEROKEE, N.C.- Forty-eight schools across the state competed in the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Lego League (FLL) robotics competition hosted by Cherokee High School in Cherokee, North Carolina, Saturday, Dec 2., 2017. The Lego League is the elementary and middle school version of FIRST Robotics.

In the state of North Carolina, North Carolina A&T State University (N.C. A&T) serves as the affiliate partner (AP) for FIRST Lego League and FIRST Tech Challenge.

The theme for this year’s FIRST Lego League competition is hydrodynamics. The teams had to design a robot that would show how to improve the way people find, transport, use or dispose of water.

North Carolina is a two-division championship tournament region between eastern and western North Carolina. The top 13 finalists from both the eastern and western regions, will compete at the state competition.

Only 13 schools from the western division were able to advance to the state competition, and out of those schools, Murphy Middle School and Martins Creek Elementary were two of the schools that will be advancing.

The region that wins at the state competition will then go onto the southeastern competition, which will have teams from several different states in the southeastern United States.

The teams from the western region that will be advancing to the state competition are:

BMS Robotics – Brevard, N.C.
Hydro Knights, Fairview School – Sylva, N.C.
The HydroMechanics, Fairview School – Sylva, N.C.
Minifigures, Cullowhee Valley School – Cullowhee, N.C.
Programming Professionals, Shining Rock Classical Academy – Waynesville, N.C.
Chaotic Robotic, Martin’s Creek School – Murphy, N.C.
Koontz Battering Rams, Koontz Intermediate School – Asheville, N.C.
Circuit Overload, Murphy Middle School – Murphy, N.C.
Accidental Genius, Summit Charter School – Cashiers, N.C.
Tarheel Terminators, Smokey Mountain School – Whittier, N.C.
Lego Lords, Summit Charter – Cashiers, N.C.
Hydrobots, Macon Middle – Franklin, N.C.
Narwhal Nation, Cullowhee Valley – Cullowhee, N.C.

The state championship will be held January 20 and 21, 2018, in Greensboro, North Carolina, on the campus of North Carolina A&T State University.

 

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