Trinity Christian slips past Pocahontas County, 38-36
The Pocahontas CountyﾠLady Warriors lost to the Trinity Christian Lady Warriors in the final seconds of an electrifying showdown in Charleston Thursday night. The game was the first ever face off between Pocahontas County and Trinity Christian.
The Lady Warriorsﾠtook a little while toﾠheat upﾠin the first half of the game, with only three points on the scoreboard at the end of the first quarter. Trinity Christian held Pocahontas County to its lowest scoring first half of the entire season, entering halftime with Trinity Christian up, 17-12.
Lady Warrior Erin White shined when she tied the game with a jumper in the third quarter, to the approval of a screaming PCHS crowd. Senior Chloe Bland followed suit only seconds later to bring PCHS ahead for the first time of the night.
Pocahontas County held the lead for most of the second half, even leading into the final seconds of the game. Trinity Christian was able to sink aﾠshot with less than10 seconds on the clock in the fourth quarter, leaving them ahead 38-36. The Lady Warriors rebounded the ball aggressively as theﾠfinal seconds woundﾠdown, but were unsuccessful after a series of last-minute, heart-stopping attempts to tie it up.
"We were up by five points there in the fourth quarter with about two and half or three minutes to go," said Lady Warrior coach Tim McClung. "They started fouling us, and we just couldn't make our foul shots."
In her final high school game, forward Miranda McNabb led the Lady Warriors in scoring with 12 points. McNabb grabbed six rebounds, stuffed a Trinity Christian shot, and stole the ball once. Lady Warrior Chloe Bland scored nine points and led the squad defensively, with 11 rebounds and four steals. Junior Olivia Workman contributed eight points, four rebounds and led the team with two blocked shots. Senior Erin White put up six points, pulled in four rebounds, and stole the ball once from Trinity Christian. Lady Warrior Heather Snead sank a free throw, snagged six boards and had one steal.
Despite the close loss, McClung is proud at the determination the girls exhibited.
"The kids played hard, they never quit," he said. "I mean, we were down the first three quarters, and they just kept playing harder defense. Our defense, I thought, played well."
The strong defensive display couldn't defeat the fact that the Lady Warriors' shot percentage ran around half their normal numbers in comparison to games the rest of the season.
"You hold a team like Trinity to 38 points and you expect to win," said McClung. "We just couldn't get the ball to drop, we just could not make shots. In the first half we were about 16% I think [shot percentage], in the second half we got it up to 25%. Normally we shoot around 40%. We were two for 14 from the three-point line, where, normally, we'll make seven or eight three-pointers a game. We had good looks, a lot of open shots, even right there at the end we got three shots in at the last 15 seconds, couldn't get any of those three to drop though."
McClung said the girls put forth a good effort throughout the course of the season.
"We had a great summer, we played some really good competition in the summer and won some close games. Then, we had a good regular season. We won 18 games in the schedule we played."
Coach McClung already has his sights set on the upcoming season. Hopefully the loss of seniors Lyndsey Barlow, Erin White, Chloe Bland and Miranda McNabb won't hurt chances at the state tournament next year.
"Losing those seniors is a lot to lose. You're talking close to 40 points a game, double digits in rebounds, and the assists are up there. But you know we've got kids that come in and work hard and we'll do the things we have to do to be competitive again next year. Soon, the summer program will be starting, we have a busy schedule planned for that. We'll try and work these young kids in and get them ready. You know we'll be knocking right back on the door again," said McClung smiling.
Last week's loss represents Pocahontas County's fourth consecutive trip to the state finals, a victory in itself.
"The whole game was a good game, it just didn't turn out quite the way we wanted it to," said McClung.