Winter has come to a close, and spring is upon us; with it comes a bevy of new sports Apex’s student-athletes will participate in. Among the most successful in years past is the lacrosse team, led by Coach John Hayden. Apex has played in six of the past eleven State Championship games, winning in 2005, 2013 and 2015, and has participated in nine of the past twelve Final Fours. The lacrosse team (7-1) was undefeated before they lost their first game of the season in an OT thriller against Marvin Ridge in Waxhaw, North Carolina. Senior Jack Hayden, Coach Hayden’s son, leads the team with thirty-five points and thirteen assists. The team’s next game is April 12, at home versus Holly Springs.
Also enjoying success at Apex is the softball team coached by Dana Higgins. Sitting undefeated currently at eleven wins, the team has eyes on another postseason trip. Senior Olivia Chiarolanzio leads the team with three homeruns, and junior Shelby Poliachik is a perfect six for six in steal attempts. Senior pitcher Julia Cerasi has dominated on the mound, throwing to the tune of a 1.03 ERA. She has started nine of Apex’s ten games, completing eight of them and shutting out her opponent four times. The team is ranked twenty-second in North Carolina. Their next game is on the road at Cary on Tuesday, April 12.
On the men’s diamond, the Cougars (10-4) currently sit in third in the SWAC with a five and three in conference record. Mike Valder is in the midst of his ninth season coaching at Apex, and after three straight sub .500 seasons, seems to have the Cougars back on track. They join the softball team at Cary on Tuesday.
One of the most exciting sports of this season is the newly added stunt. The gymnastics and cheerleading hybrid made its way to eleven Wake County schools last year. Apex’s very own stunt team, coached by Stefanie Barton, triumphed over the entire league in the sport’s first year, toppling Millbrook in the finals. The team looks to sustain their success in year two of stunt.
Another season is upon us, along with all of the sports we Cougars look forward to watching. Apex continues to be successful on the field, diamond and mats, and another state championship is more than likely on the horizon. It is only a matter of time with Apex’s embarrassment of riches in its athletic programs.