Charlotte, NC

Queen City Roundup 11/9: Hornets lose to Lakers, Panthers lose to Patriots, Charlotteans lose water in main break & more

Collin Cunningham

By Collin Cunningham

(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) Good morning, Charlotteans! Hopefully, you didn't miss yesterday's roundup, but that just means we have more to cover today. It's Tuesday, Nov. 9, and today's extra-long Queen City Roundup has the latest about the Charlotte Hornets, who fell to the Los Angeles Lakers in a close game that lasted into overtime last night.

There is also information on another broken water main break in Charlotte and what that means for residents, how North Carolina stakeholders are confronting the Biden administration over its recently announced vaccine mandate and the strange story of NC middle schoolers who contracted an unexplained illness.

But that's not all! We also recap the Carolina Panthers' 24-6 loss to the New England Patriots on Sunday and the team's latest injuries following the showdown with Tom Brady.

1. Charlotte Hornets stung repeatedly in 5-game losing streak

What happened: The Charlotte Hornets tried to float like a butterfly and sting like their namesake last night but were defeated 126-123 by the Los Angeles Lakers in overtime. The team is now on a five-game losing streak, with their next game against the Memphis Grizzlies scheduled for tomorrow at 8 p.m.

Why it matters: The team started out alright this year, picking up a three-game win streak in late October following the season's start, but they have been unable to recapture that magic and are currently ranked ninth in the NBA Eastern Conference. Despite the loss, the Hornets were able to get LeBron and his other teammates on the ropes a few times, coming back from a 14-point lead to bring the game into overtime in the fourth quarter. Ultimately, however, the Charlotte team was unable to prevent the Lakers from scoring 9 points in the game's last three minutes.

2. Charlotte's third water main break this month shuts down Queen Road West

What happened: Crews came to the vicinity of the Queens Road West and Westfield Road intersection on Tuesday to deal with a water main break near Myers Park Country Club. Charlotte Water tweeted at 9 a.m. that residents living on Queen Road between Croydon Road and Selwyn Avenue would be without water service for at least six hours. As of late Tuesday morning, the road remained closed and drivers were rerouting to Park Road or Selwyn Avenue.

Why it matters: This is the third water main break to occur in the Queen City since mid-October when Charlotte Water advised residents affected by a large-scale spill to boil their water. Another main break followed near the intersection of East Third and South Tryon streets the next week, which is when WBTV reported that the city was failing to meet its goals of replacing antiquated pipes.

3. NC labor secretary, airline pilots speak and act out against federal vaccine mandate

What happened: Tar Heel State officials and employees have already pushed back against the Biden administration's COVID-19 vaccine requirement in various ways, with North Carolina Labor Commissioner Josh Dobson telling CBS17 he "would tell businesses to not do anything at this point" as the mandate contends with legal challenges. Pilots from major airlines gathered at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport on Saturday to express their opposition to the requirement.

Why it matters: The White House announced a federal vaccine mandate on Nov. 4 that would require companies with 100 or more employees and Medicaid and Medicare health workers to get workers fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 4 or begin testing them for the virus weekly. North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein has spoken out in support of the mandate.

4. McCaffrey returns from IR for Panthers' loss to Patriots

What happened: The Carolina Panthers find themselves ranked last in the NFC South with a seasonal win-loss record of 4-5 after falling to the New England Patriots, 24-6, on Sunday. ESPN reports Carolina running back Christian McCaffrey carried the ball for 52 yards over 14 attempts during his first appearance in six weeks. The team pulled McCaffrey out of injured reserve following a hamstring injury from the team's Week 3 game against the Houston Texans, but put the names of center Matt Paradis, left tackle Cameron Erving and defensive lineman Brian Burns on the hurt list.

Why it matters: The Cardiac Cats' recent performance is a far cry from what the team was doing earlier this year, racking up three wins in their first three games of the season after a decent preseason. The Panthers most recently won against the Atlanta Falcons on Oct. 31, but that team still leads in their division as the Carolina team has lost five out of their last six matchups. Though the Panthers lost, Fansided stated that McCaffrey's return "was an encouraging one."
Panthers running back CHristian McCaffrey ran for an average 3.7 yards per attempt when he took the field for the first time since Week 3.(Lance King/Getty Images)

5. Medical officials yet to diagnose 45 NC students who fell ill

What happened: Teachers and medical professionals are confused after 45 students of Starmount Middle School in Yadkin County experienced nausea and headaches on Monday. Students were required to shelter in place at the school while first responders came to the scene, but Yadkin County Schools and the county health department are still investigating the cause. CO2 emissions have been considered and rejected, and food poisoning is another potential cause of the unexplained symptoms.

Why it matters: Remember the last time people started getting ill for unknown reasons?

6. Way-too-early QCR holiday preview: Polar Express at NC Transportation Museum

What, you think we'd leave you hanging without an excessively early wintertime event preview? Think again! Though it may seem early to start listing off holiday-themed events in Charlotte, the Queen City is so ripe with things to do that it's never too early to plan. Today's pick is still early, but not so early that you can't do it this weekend if you want.

Starting this weekend, Carlotteans willing to make the 45-minute drive out to the North Carolina Tranposrtaiotn Museum in Spencer will be able to hop aboard a railway recreation of the Polar Express train from the classic children's book. Tickets start at $38 for adults and $32 for children but don't expect the price of admission to include a meet and greet with Tom Hanks. Riders will need to come equipped with a COVID-19 vaccination card or negative test from within the past 72 hours, but no word yet on whether the conductor will need to hole-punch those.

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I cover the city of Charlotte, North Carolina for NewsBreak's Creator Program. Check back often for daily headline roundups to learn what's happening in the Queen City!

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