Hoover's Sam Schoolcraft has averaged nearly 15 points over the last four games.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- It's doubtful that Poca and Scott can conjure up a game tonight that's any more compelling than their first two this season.But then again, this one carries a berth into the state tournament, so that's sure to make it memorable enough.The Dots (18-6) and Skyhawks (14-10) tangle at 7 tonight at Poca High School in a Class AA Region 4 co-final, with the winner moving on to the March 13-16 state tournament at the Charleston Civic Center.Another Kanawha Valley team guns for a state tourney spot tonight, as Herbert Hoover (14-10) visits Tolsia (16-8) at 7 in the other Region 4 co-final.
Poca and Scott haven't ripped the nets for a lot of points in their two regular-season meetings, but they have left fans gasping for air.In their first game at Poca on Jan. 11, the Dots successfully pulled off a length-of-the-floor pass from Matt Chandler to Noah Frampton with 1.5 seconds remaining, and Frampton hit a foul-line jumper at the buzzer for a 40-39 win.Scott's Matt Dolan appeared to be the hero that night when he dropped in a jumper from the lane with 1.5 seconds remaining to put the Skyhawks up 39-38. But Frampton's buzzer-beater provided the fourth and final lead change in the last three minutes of the game.Then on Feb. 19 in Madison, Poca held a 10-point second-half lead but watched it melt away as it went nearly 13 minutes without scoring a point, losing 39-35. A rebound goal by Cameron Cottrill with 0.5 seconds left in the game prevented the Dots from going scoreless for the final quarter and a half.
Dots coach Allen Osborne realizes that with points at a premium between the two teams, every chance to score shouldn't go overlooked."Every possession is so important to us,'' Osborne said. "We've got to value the ball. We can't take plays off."Sometimes we pass up good shots to shoot a 3. And the best defensive player on the floor is that 3-point line.''Hoover lost twice to Tolsia during the regular season, dropping a close game (43-39 at Falling Rock on Jan. 3) and a not-so-close game (58-41 at Glen Hayes on Feb. 19).
Cody Morris, the Huskies' 6-foot-6 senior center and leading scorer on the season, tallied 35 points in those two contests. In the latter, he left shortly before halftime after suffering a sprained ankle, but returned later in the game.The Rebels are paced by three double-figure scorers in Morgan Stacy (14.2), Terry Davis (13.3) and Brandon Clark (12.3).A fourth Tolsia player, Austin Brewer, canned a career-high 18 points against Hoover two weeks ago.Doug Smock contributed to this report. Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or firstname.lastname@example.org.