DURHAM — On a team with a Division I Player of the Year candidate in Kevin Henry, a second-team All-State selection in sophomore Josh Morissette, and a member of the honorable mention team like junior Ryan Grijalva, other players are needed to step up and fill a variety of different roles.

For the Exeter High School boys basketball team, that was senior Cam Clark on Saturday.

“His greatest attribute is that he is a tough, tough competitor,” Exeter coach Jeff Holmes said. “He competes — that kid competes. He rebounds, he throws his body around all over the place, he does anything you ask. He’s a good player. He’s one of our best shooters. We always tell him, ‘When you’re open, rip that 3.’ He brings great defensive pressure, he shoots a high percentage and is a low turnover guy. He’s the guy coaches love.”

The 5-foot-8 Clark scored seven points and had six rebounds, four steals and two assists in 30 minutes in No. 1 Exeter’s 53-30 win over second-seeded Salem for the Division I state title. He also took a couple first-half charges.

“I just play my role out there,” Clark said. “I have to help us win is as many ways as I can: rebounds, assists, scoring, whatever I have to do is what I do. I thought (winning) would be great, but when it really happens, there are no other words. It’s amazing."

Clark said winning a state championship in his final high school game was a “dream come true.”

“I’ve been playing with these guys since grade school, and to win it all in my senior year, I am at a loss for words, honestly,” Clark said. “It’s an amazing feeling.”


Seniors Ryan O’Donnell and Chris Natola, junior Michael Leonard and sophomore Jacob Gibbons took off their warm-up jackets and checked into the game for the first time with 1 minute, 28 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter. Two seconds later, junior Jaedon Cliche joined his teammates.

"We're all very close off the court," O'Donnell said. "We all hang out with each other, and I think that translated to our success."

“When I saw those five kids get off the bench, five kids who have worked so hard in practice all year, and to see them come in this game was something special,” sophomore Josh Morissette said. “To be able to get a win one last time this year with my brothers and to see their enjoyment was as much as mine, was an unreal feeling.”


Morissette lives next door to his head coach and grew up playing basketball in the driveway with Holmes' children.

“(Holmes) has worked so hard all of his life,” Morissette said. “To be able to do this for him is unreal. He pushed us and he wanted this real bad, and to be able to get for him is unbelievable.”