March 18, 2013
Tolsia’s late run in the fourth quarter comes up short;
CHARLESTON, WV – Tolsia’s second straight season to the Elite 8 in the Class AA West Virginia High School State Basketball Tournament came to an end this past Thursday night at the Charleston Civic Center. The fifth seeded Rebels went up against the fourth seed Robert C. Byrd Eagles and Tolsia’s late fourth quarter comeback fell short as the Eagles sent coach Hatfield and his Runnin’ Rebels back home with a 51-44 loss, and claimed the Class AA Championship.
Tolsia (17-9) scored the first basket of the game as senior Terry Davis was fouled on an attempted shot and sank both free throws to make it 2-0. The Panthers quickly answered back and went up 4-12 by pressuring defense getting the Rebels out of their rythm early in the game. The Eagles took a 6-13 lead to start the 2nd period as RCByrd scored 8 points down low in the paint.
RCByrd (20-6) continued to keep pressure on Tolsia’s explosive offense and maintained a 13-21 lead with 3:23 til the half. Seniors Brandon Clark was fouled and made both shots from the charity line, both Austin Brewer and Morgan Williamson drove the ball down low in the paint to bring the Rebels to within 2 points, 19-21 going into halftime.
The start of the 3rd period coach Hatfield didn’t like the set up his Rebels were playing and called a timeout with 7:07 on the clock. With 6:45 on the clock Tolsia’s Brandon Clark has a chance to tie the game form the foul line but hits 1 of 2 from the line and down by 1 point, 20-21. With shots traded back and forth, the Eagles Devonti Birch connects from the 3-point line to put RCByrd up by 6 points, 30-24. Tolsia’s 3rd period performance of scoring 5 points had them down 24-34 heading into the 4th period having them play catch up the rest of the game.
“We felt pretty lucky to be down only two points going into halftime. We went into halftime and we knew that the third period was going to be big,” said coach Hatfield. “They came out and their defense was very good, with about three minutes to go in the third period we had only scored one point. Their defense was key in the third period and we just couldn’t get any shots to fall. We probably picke the worst day of the year to play three periods of basketball”
Going from the 3rd period into the 4th the Eagles went on a 0-12 run to go up by 15 points, 24-39 with 7:07 left in the 4th. Tolsia’s senior point guard Terry Davis scored 11 of his game-high 20 points in the final period. RCByrd missed 11 foul shot attempts in the final period to allow the Rebels to fight back and get to within 4 points with 00:23 seconds left in regulation. Davis scored the Rebels final 11 of 15 points down the stretch as he began Tolsia’s comeback with 3:02 left in the 4th and down 31-45.
“I just wanted to win, I didn’t think about the points,” Davis said. “I just wanted to win, I didn’t care about the points I scored…..I just wanted to win.”
Tolsia senior Morgan Stacy was pressured throughout the night and was held scoreless in the fist half and was 6 points shy coming into the contest of 1,000 points for his career. Going into the 4th period Stacy had scored only 2 points, with 4:03 on the clock he sank back-to-back foul shots to give him 998 points. With 3:46 left in regulation Davis connects on a 10 foot jump shot to give him his 1,000 points and the only points scored in the game by Davis.
Senior Austin Brewer grabbed double digits in the boards with 10 rebounds and ended the night with 7 points as he scored 3 of his points in the final period.
“Give credit to our boys, they didn’t quit,” Hatfield said. “They were still playing hard til the buzzer sounded and I want to commend them for that.”
Scoring: 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Tolsia 6 13 5 20 44
RCByrd 13 8 13 17 51
Williamson – 4 pts, 9 reb, 1 block, 1 steal
Brewer – 7 pts, 10 reb, 3 blocks, 1 steal
Clark – 7 pts, 5 reb, 2 steals
Davis – 20 pts, 4 reb, 1 steal
Stacy – 6 pts, 2 reb
Stroud – 1 reb, 1 block
Hill – 7 pts, 10 reb, 2 steals
N.Dyer – 12 pts, 1 reb, 2 steals
Birch – 13 pts, 8 reb, 6 steals
L.Dyer – 10 pts, 3 reb, 2 steals
Noble – 6 pts, 7 reb, 1 block, 1 steal
Steele – 1 pt, 2 steals
Malfregeot – 1 reb
Langford – 2 pts, 3 reb, 1 steal