HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS BASKETBALL: Hickory honors Helms for 450th career win

Published Thursday, February 13th, 2020

Hickory High varsity girls basketball head coach Barbara Helms with her team and a plaque presented to her after the Red Tornadoes beat visiting Alexander Central on Tuesday night. The school and school system have indicated Helms has 450 career wins while coaching at East Burke and HHS. Game-by-game research of Helms’ 20 years as a head coach give her 449 career wins./HICKORY PUBLIC SCHOOLS PHOTO

Game-by-game results give coach 449 wins

at East Burke and with Red Tornadoes


Editor’s note: Information in this story, including research on Barbara Helms’ records, is copyrighted and can’t be reproduced in print, via broadcast or any other means without a direct waiver of the copyright by HobbsDailyReport.com. To request that waiver, email chobbs001@att.net.



HICKORY – Hickory High, via a press release from the Hickory Public Schools on Wednesday, is indicating Red Tornadoes varsity girls’ basketball head coach Barbara Helms has reached 450 career victories.

In the press release, Helms is credited with a 450th career victory via Hickory’s 60-52 home win over Alexander Central in a Northwestern 3A-4A game on Tuesday night.


The press release included a photo following the Alexander Central game that included the HHS team with Helms as she received a plaque commemorating a milestone victory.

Extensive research by HobbsDailyReport.com completed on Jan. 28 – including reviewing every game Helms is known to have been head coach in at first East Burke and then HHS – had her career record at 446-105 (38-37 at East Burke, 408-68 at HHS).

Freedom defeated HHS on Jan. 28, dropping Helms’ career mark to 446-106, and the Red Tornadoes have since posted these wins:

— Last Wednesday (Jan. 5), 44-40 in overtime over South Caldwell at HHS.

— On Monday night, 50-48 at Watauga in a makeup game in Boone.

— On Tuesday night, 60-52 over Alexander Central in Hickory.

That would leave Helms’ records at 449-106 career and 411-69 in 17 seasons as the Red Tornadoes’ girls’ head coach.

Hickory (17-5, 8-3) is idle until Friday when it closes the regular season at home against St. Stephens, the school Helms has the most career wins against (44).

An email response on Wednesday night from HPS’ communications department said the school and school system are going with the Alexander Central victory as No. 450 in Helms’ career.

The North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) recognizes coaching records and other student-athlete accomplishments as those a school submits (or will submit) for the NCHSAA Record Book or an NCHSAA listing.

An NCHSAA staffer said Thursday the NCHSAA might ask for a year-by-year record breakdown that equals the number of wins a coach has but does not require it with a submission.

Statistics in all high school sports via media reports are considered unofficial; i.e, in football if a school submits a career rushing total of a player as 5,222 and media-kept totals reflect 5,177, the recognized career total for the player is 5,222 even if the school can’t provide game-by-game totals and a media outlet can document its total.

HobbsDailyReport.com reviewed Helms’ coaching records after the website was asked by the HHS athletic department if it had any information documenting Helms’ basketball coaching career.

That review included looking at the game date, location and final score of every game Helms served as head coach at East Burke in three seasons in Icard (1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99) and her 17 at HHS.

The website has reached out to HPS officials, the HHS athletic department and Helms to try to clarify if its game-by-game results are complete or missing any games.

The year-by-year records for all 20 teams coached by Helms, at this point, equal a record of 449-106.

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