Lady Warriors win two key games
Workman, Snead, Kane, Day and Murphy top the stats
The Class A #6 (AP Poll) Lady Warriors nipped PVC/Region 2 arch rival #7 Tygarts Valley 41-39 at home on January 14, and it was the usual barnburner that was decided in the final seconds of a hard-fought battle. Each team scored 11 points in the first quarter, and both squads made 13 field goals and two treys each while both also attempted 12 foul shots each by game’s end. The Lady Warriors hit nine of their 12 foul shots, while TVHS hit only seven, and those two misses by the Lady Bulldogs made the difference in the game. The score was tied at 3-3, 11-11, 20-20, 22-22 and 39-39 in the fourth. PCHS’s biggest lead in the first half was five points, 20-15. The Lady Warriors built a six-point lead by the end of the third 35-29 and started the fourth with their biggest game lead of eight points, 37-29. The last Bulldog lead was 9-8 in the first quarter.
With 3:50 to go in the game and with PCHS leading by only three points, 37-34, TVHS senior Shanda Howell, season and game high scorer, was locked in a struggle for the ball with PCHS freshman Melissa Murphy. Murphy won control of the ball and was propelled backwards slamming the back of her head hard on the wood floor. The sound of the hit was deafening, and the large crowd of fans from both schools grew silent and concerned. After first aid was administered to Murphy for a long period of time by coaches, parents and nurse Cindy McLaughlin Workman, a Marlinton ambulance crew arrived and took Murphy to the hospital to be checked for a concussion. Murphy left the gym at 9:12 p.m. with seven points, a team-high seven rebounds, a team-high five assists and the only PCHS block of the game. Both teams had to warm-up again, and the game continued after the Tygarts Valley and PCHS cheering squads, teams and fans showed good sportsmanship in wishing the best for Murphy’s recovery. Murphy sat out the game at Moorefield but should return to action for the Moorefield at PCHS rematch.
When the game restarted Howell hit the second of two foul shots when fouled at the 3:02 mark to cut the PCHS lead to 37-35. PCHS sophomore Bobbie McNabb hit a basket to up the lead to 39-35. With 2:12 to go TVHS cut the lead to 39-37. Howell would get two of her six fourth period points with 30 seconds to go to tie the game again at 39-39. Sophomore Tristin Day was double-teamed by two taller Bulldogs and had the ball stolen, and then PCHS got the ball back with 6.8 seconds to go when a TVHS player stepped out-of-bounds. Coach Mike Kane called a timeout to setup a play. Day dribbled the ball up the floor and hesitated when she saw intended receiver senior Olivia Workman was not open. Day then found senior Heather Snead, who on a back-door-cut was wide-open under the left side of the basket. Day threw a perfect pass, and Snead hit the shot as time ran out, assuring the 41-39 PCHS victory.
Workman took team honors with 13 points including two treys, six rebounds and a team-high three steals. Day and Snead each scored six points, and McNabb pulled down six rebounds in spite of sitting on the bench in foul trouble for more than one quarter. Junior Allison Jonese got the only block for PCHS. Howell, who will play at D&E next year, was game high-scorer with 15 points, six assists, five rebounds, three steals and two blocks. Junior Paige Pritt scored eight points and grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds. Junior Emily Pingley accounted for eight rebounds.
PCHS next traveled to Moorefield on January 18 and came home with a convincing 54-28 win. Coach Kane did not know what to expect since Tygarts Valley had beaten visiting Moorefield on January 4 by 29 points but was out-scored by MHS in the second half of their January 16 game
After PCHS trailed 2-3 early in the game, the Warriors never trailed again. There was one 10-10 tie early in the second quarter, but PCHS led 22-13 by the half. The 19-10 PCHS edge in the fourth was the best scoring quarter for both teams.
Day had 19 points and six steals, while junior Marka Kane came off the bench and had her best output of the season with nearly a double-double of 10 points and nine rebounds. Snead tallied nine points, nine rebounds and three assists, while Workman accounted for eight points, seven rebounds, five steals and three assists. Senior Tara George was high scorer for Moorefield with nine points. PCHS junior Lorena Rose came off the bench and pulled down six defensive rebounds.
The Lady Warriors were ranked #7 in Class A in the first MetroNews Sports Girls Basketball Power Index of the season released on January 16. PCHS is also ranked #7 in both the latest Coaches Poll and the MaxPreps rankings as well as #8 in the AP Poll. As Coach Kane gets his team ready for its return to post-season play in Region 2 the week of February 18 through 23 after many years in Region 3, the rest of the schedule is a tough one with only two of the last six rematches at PCHS.
After fifteen games for PCHS and an 11-4 record, it looks like the teams-to-beat of the twelve teams in Region 2 will be #8 (Metro) Tucker County (9-4) and #20 Tygarts Valley (9-4) in Section 1, and #28 Pendleton County (6-5) and #7 PCHS (11-4) in Section 2. The two Region 2 games last season to advance teams to Charleston resulted in section runner-up Pendleton County losing at the opposite section champ Trinity and Section runner-up Clay-Battelle losing at opposite Section champ Tucker County. Clay-Battelle and Trinity have both been moved to Region 1, and both teams are in Section 2. #15 Moorefield (6-7) in section 1 and #25 Clarksburg Notre Dame (4-9) in section 2 have shown that they are the most likely to play any spoiler role this season in Region 2.
PCHS will travel to Tucker County for a rematch Friday, January 25, and will try to repeat last year’s win at Hambelton. Alleghany County Virginia will travel to PCHS on Monday, January 28, for another rematch. Both JV games will begin at 6 p.m. with the varsity games following at 7:30 p.m.