FORT GAY, W. VA. — In front of a record crowd #1 seed Tolsia ( 16-7 ) slayed the Region 4 Section 2 giant #2 seed Tug Valley ( 13-12 ) for the third time this season with a 68-54 win in the Championship game Friday night at Rebel Arena.
2019 Region 4 Section 2 Champion Tolsia Rebels
Both teams started off slow as expected with the stakes so high and the atmosphere off the charts on both sides of the Arena. Both teams were scoreless for the first minutes before the Rebels went ahead 4-0 and 10-4 but Tug Valley went on a 7-0 run to make it 11-10. With the score tied at 13 Jacob Mollette launched a 65 footer at the end of the first to put Tolsia up 16-13 as the home crowd roared.
In the second quarter both teams made runs with Tolsia taking a 24-17 lead before the Panthers tied it up at 24 but Tolsia finished the period with a 9-2 run to take a 33-26 lead into the locker room.
In the third quarter Tug Valley climbed all the way back and trailed 43-42 with under a minute left before Freshman Anthony Lovins hit a three pointer picked up a steal before Freshman Jesse Muncy hit a deep three to set the score at 49-42 heading to the fourth period.
As the fourth quarter began with the clock running there was some confusion at the scores table as the Tug Valley book keeper stopped the game over a score dispute saying Tug Valley should of had 44 points but the official book was correct and the score remained 49-42 and the quarter was restarted. Tolsia kept Tug Valley at bay and never let the lead get under seven points the rest of the game and the Panthers tried to speed up the game and gave up some easy baskets before closing the game at the foul line.
The Rebels had three in double figures led by Jesse Muncy who had a game high 25 points including 5 three pointers, Jacob Mollette hit 4 three pointers for 17 points, Austin Salmons tallied 10 points, Rob Cantrell tallied 7 points, Zack Ball 4 points, Anthony Lovins 3 points, Gavin Meadows 2 points.
Tolsia hit 11 three pointers and went 10-18 from the charity stripe.
The Panthers were led by Ian Reed with 17 including 3 three pointers, Easton Davis tallied 14 points, Ethan Colegrove 12 points, Caleb May 9 points, Brady Newsome 2 points.
Tug Valley hit 3 three pointers and went 5-9 from the foul line.
Tolsia will move on to the Region 4 Co Final on Thursday vs Williamstown ( 18-5 ) at Rebel Arena 7:00.
Winner will advance to the Class A State Tournament March 13-16 in Charleston.
Tug Valley will travel to Parkersburg Catholic ( 17-7 ) the same night with the winner advancing to the Class A State Tournament.
TVHS 13 13 16 12 = 54
THS 16 17 16 19 = 68
Tolsia Head Coach Todd Maynard
“… It’s really surreal, I’m full of joy and happy for this group of kids, really really proud of them. I knew we had a shot to be good but a lot of people said we were a year away or maybe two from competing but those guys weren’t having any of that talk. We beat those guys three times this year and I think our kids are just better.”
“… We got off to a rocky start and I think both teams came out tight and the huge crowd had something to do with that. Once we settled down and knocked down a couple shots I thought we were going to be ok. Then Jacob Mollette’s 65 footer at the end of the first quarter was unbelievable and was a huge shot in the arm.”
“… We knew in the third quarter Tug Valley would make a run and they did, we were only up before we made two huge threes before the end of the quarter by Freshman Anthony Lovins and Jesse Muncy to get out lead back to seven points going into the fourth. I have told people all year about Lovins and I went to him and said if I put you in will you do it with confidence and he said yes and went in and banked in a three pointer and then picked up a steal on defense. Those three plays were a huge turning point in the game.”
“… In the fourth I thought we got careless with the ball and took some quick shots but for the most part we were fundamentally sound down the stretch to close out the victory.”
“… Our crowd was amazing tonight and it’s all because of those 15 guys wearing Tolsia uniforms. It’s all about the kids they have bought in to change the culture here and it’s awesome to see.”
“… We have seen Williamstown a few times this year and they are very good. They have a big kid that’s really physical and a couple nice guards. They have been ranked in the top ten all year so it will be a challenge for us but we are at Rebel Arena and I know we will play hard and compete till the end with a shot to play in the Big House.”