PCHS girls host the Section 1 semi-finals on Thursday

2019 Petersburg Girls Basketball Classic JV Tournament Class A Champions: front row, l to r:  Macaden Taylor, Twyla McCarty, Cloey Sharp; back row:  JV Coach Chloe Bland, Makalya Ervine, Kierstin Taylor, Sienna Bircher, Maxine Puffenbarger, Destiny Vandevender, Allyson Alderman, Rayna Smith, Makayla Vandevander, Jerica Reed, JV Coach Allen Taylor. Not pictured, Coach Mike Kane. Shannon Bircher photo

PCHS JV wins the Class A crown at Petersburg Classic

Bruce McKean
Contributing Writer

The Pocahontas County girls basketball teams ended their regular season with a packed week of games, and only two of the eight games were at home. Due to the bad weath-er this season, four games at PCHS versus Bath County Virginia and Philip Barbour could not be rescheduled. 

Last week the PCHS varsity was voted the #2 seed by the 13 head coaches in Class A Region III, and  Summers County received the #1 seed. PCHS and SCHS played each other twice this season, and both teams won at their home game by 11 points. As a result of that vote, Summers is the #1 seed of the six schools in Section 2, and PCHS is the #1 seed of the seven schools in Section 1.

The other six teams in Section 1 opened play February 18, and PCHS got a bye in that first round. Class A #5 (AP Poll) Pocahontas (17-3) is now scheduled to host Monday’s winner between  #5 seed Webster County (3-16) at #4 seed Charleston Catholic (7-15).  PCHS played each of those two schools one time this season and beat CCHS 37-21 in Charleston in mid-January and beat WCHS 68-15 in mid-December at PCHS. 

PCHS V, 64
Tygarts Valley V, 51

PCHS started their busy week in Mill Creek February 12. The team had already ended Tygarts Valley’s 5-0 undefeated season, that included a 70-45 win at Class AA Philip Barbour, in a January 2 game at Dunmore. It was senior night on Tuesday  at TVHS, and their leading scorer, senior Abby Harris, needed 17 points to beat Andrea Saucerman’s career scoring record of 1,318 points.

TVHS came to play, and they led 14-13 after one quarter, that included one lead change, and led 29-27 after four more lead changes and a TVHS 7-0 run to end the second quarter. After one more lead change and a 33-33 tie, PCHS took the third quarter 20-10 for the 47-39 lead going into the final frame.  A 17-12 fourth quarter sealed the 64-51 Warrior win. Harris broke the record with the game-high 18 points that included 10 for 14 foul shooting.  

Senior Brianna Hefner connected for a double-double of 17 points and 14 rebounds. Kira Bircher added to the cause with 13 points and six steals. Charity Warder matched the 13 points and blocked four shots. Point guard Alexa Taylor tallied 11 points and seven assists. TVHS junior Abby Lanham scored 16 points. TVHS dropped to 11-7 with the loss, and won their first sectional game, 46-36, over Clay-Battelle.

Tygarts Valley JV, 26

The JV game at Mill Creek started as a defensive battle with a 4-4 first quarter, and TVHS led 12-8 by the half.  PCHS had another hot third quarter, 14-6, after lots of guidance from Coaches Mike Kane, Allen Taylor and  Chloe Bland. The PCHS 19 – 8 final frame (33 second half points) nailed the 41-26 win.

Leading the way for PCHS were: Cloey Sharp with 12 points and Sienna Bircher with a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds, including nine for 18 foul shooting. Eight girls scored for PCHS.

PCHS V, 40
Tucker County V, 63

#10 Tucker County traveled to #5 PCHS February 13 for a rescheduled game.  Tucker took the first match up, 63-49, in mid-January, so a big crowd was on-hand to see if the Lady Warriors could end Tucker’s 12-game win streak vs PCHS. The last win for PCHS over Tucker was six years ago, a 39-38 win, on January 14, 2013.

Tucker increased its first quarter one-point lead, 9-8, each of the last three quarters and led by the following margins:  2nd – four points, 3rd – six points and 4th – 23 points (63-40) with a dominating 23-11 fourth frame.  Tucker had two girls in double digits – junior Terra Kuhn with 17 points and seven rebounds, and senior Kelcee James with 14 points. Only Warder was in double digits for PCHS with 10 points. Tucker improved to 13-6.

Brianna Hefner tallied eight rebounds, seven points and three steals on her senior night. Hefner’s season rank on the team going into sectionals in eight statistic categories are: #1 Rebounding – 151, #2 Scoring – 205,  #2 ‘tie’ blocks – 19, #2 two-pointers – 82, #2 free throws – 41, #3 steals – 72, #5 assists – 47, and #5 deflections – 29.

Tucker County JV, 20

The JV teams only played two quarters due to the number of players available to play for Tucker County. PCHS started strong with a 20-8 first quarter, and TCHS took the second quarter 12-5, so PCHS held on for the 25-20 win.

Cloey Sharp made 10 of her 13 game-high points in the first quarter. TCHS freshman Jayden Kuhn was high scorer for her team with nine points. PCHS led in rebounds 24 to 10.

PCHS V, 52
Philip Barbour V, 40

PCHS traveled to Phillippi February 24 to face Class AA Phillip Barbour and the team’s new head coach Rick Mouser. This was the first meeting between these two schools. The Lady Warriors opened strong with a 15-7 first stanza and a 19-13 second for a 34-20 half-time lead. The Colts’ high scorer in the game, Emma Kennedy, hit her second and third three in the third, and only Calhoun was able to score in the period that ended with PBHS only down six points, 36-42. Four Warriors went on a 10-0 run to begin the fourth frame, and the Colts were only able to put four points on the board by game’s end. The game ended 52-40, and PBHS dropped to 5-16 while PCHS improved to 17-3.

PCHS was called for 10 fouls in the first half versus only four for the home team. The Colts made seven of 15 foul shots in the game, and the Warriors only shot five free throws and made three of those. PCHS out-rebounded PBHS 32 to 21. Game high scorer with a double-double was Calhoun with 18 points, 13 rebounds and six steals. Jerica Reed came off the bench and hit four straight threes in the second quarter for 12 points, and she became the 10th girl in school history who now tie the threes in a quarter record. Warder accumulated eight points, seven rebounds, three assists and three deflections. Alexa Taylor totaled seven points, seven assists and three deflections. Two senior Colts on senior night were in double digits, Kennedy with 12 points and Bailey Nestor with 11 points. 

Philip Barbour JV, 34

The JV game at Philip Barbour high school was unusual in that the first, second and fourth quarters were all ties, 11-11, 9-9 and 10-10. PCHS won the game in the third quarter with a 22-4 effort. Sharp scored nine points in that third period and finished the game as high scorer with 15 points. Destiny Vandevender was next with 10 points, and Sienna Bircher produced nine rebounds, six points and three deflections in only two quarters of play. High scorer for PBHS was junior Dystonie Simmons. Reed hit two three that up her total for the day at six trey.

Hampshire County JV, 24

The PCHS JV team traveled to the Petersburg Girls Basketball Classic February 15. The tournament included five games on Friday. Ten teams from the Class AAA, AA and A ranks participated. The Lady Warriors played the Class AAA Hampshire Co. JV team, and won the game 29-24. Game high scorers were Sharp with 13 points and five rebounds and Kierstin Taylor with 11 points, eight rebounds and seven steals. Sienna Bircher had game-highs of 13 rebounds and five steals. The win moved PCHS into the Class A Championship game on Saturday.

Pendleton County JV, 37
Three championship games, AAA, AA and A, were played February 16. PCHS played Pendleton County for the third time this season and won the Class A Championship 46-37.

The top four scorers for PCHS were:  Destiny Vandevender – 11 points, Sienna Bircher – a double-double of 10 points, 15 rebounds and four out of four free throws, Kierstin Taylor – nine points and four steals, and Allyson Alderman – nine points. The game was a foul fest with PCHS called for 25 fouls and making 22 of 30 foul shots (73%) and Pendleton given 28 while hitting only 13 of 26 (50%). The Warriors making nine more foul shots was the margin of victory for PCHS.  Thirty-one foul shots were shot in the final frame, and six girls left the game due to fouls.  PCHS took all but the 9-16 third quarter. 

PCHS finished its season with a great 19-2 record.  That has to be one of the best, if not the best, records ever for a PCHS JV team.

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