Knights win CWVAC basketball championship
After defeating Richwood and then Geary on their way to the championship game, Coach Gary Rexroad’s Knights downed Walton 69-35 in Saturday night’s championship game to become CWVAC basketball champions for 2013-2014. Coach Rexroad remarked that this is only the fifth time in the school’s history that the boys have won the conference basketball championship. The last one came in 2006.
In the first game of the tournament, played Tuesday, the Knights cruised past Richwood 60-23. Everyone on Braxton’s team put points on the scoreboard in that game as the Knights led from the beginning. With 11 points, Garrett Shingler led the scoring. Friday night’s game pitted Braxton, the second seed from the CWVAC Western Division, against Geary, the top seed from the Eastern Division. Although the game was somewhat closer than the first post-season game, the Knights came away with a 46-33 win and the right to play for the conference championship.
In Friday night’s game, the score was tied near the end of the first quarter, but the Knights hit two three-pointers to put them up 14-8 at the end of the first. From that point, Braxton maintained the lead. Three Braxton players scored in double figures against Geary. Seth Arnold led with 12 while Cole Browning and Shingler each added 10.
In the championship game, the Knights faced Walton, who had eliminated number-one seed Summersville. More than equal to the task, Braxton outscored their opponents 69-35 for the win. Browning was high –point man with 16 points, while Payton Lockard added 11.
The CWVAC champions had two players on the All-Tournament Team—Garrett Shingler and Seth Arnold, along with the Most Valuable Player—Cole Browning. Three Braxton players also made All-Conference. Those three were Payton Lockard, Garrett Shingler, and Cole Browning.
Lady Eagles' season ends with sectional loss to Webster
The Lady Eagles’ post-season hopes ended last Wednesday night as the Lady Highlanders of Webster County defeated them 43-33 in the first round of sectional play.
Coach Keith Greene explained the Braxton-Webster contests. “The first time we played, we won by 19 points. The second time we played, Webster won by 31 points. With each game, we both played the best game we could.” Continuing, the coach said, “Braxton worked hard all week to stop Webster. I’m so proud of the hard work and attitude that this team brings to practice and into games. We came up short, 43-33, but I as a coach am very proud of my team!”
After a tie at the end of the first quarter of the sectional game, Webster came out to outscore the Lady Eagles by nine in the second and to go into halftime up 20-11. Braxton won the third quarter 9-6 but failed to catch the Lady Highlanders.
The final quarter and the win then went to Webster.
Leading scorer for the Lady Eagles, Logan Frame put in 10 points. Emily Harper pulled down eight rebounds to lead there. She also had four steals. Braxton’s three-point shooting was off, as the Lady Eagles made only 10.5 percent of three three-point attempts. Their overall field-goal percentage was 22.6, while they shot better than 58 percent from the line.
To continue with the emphasis on his pride of the team, Coach Greene commented, “Just like the last half of the season didn’t look so great in the win column, but in my book the season wasn’t anywhere close to a disappointing year ending 8-12.” Continuing, the coach said, “Watching the team grow and greatly improve every game was a win in my book. [We returned] no starters from last year, returning only one senior, two juniors and 17 underclassmen. Take away the score of each game, this team was fun to watch.”
Two Braxton wrestlers place in state tournament
Out of three Braxton wrestlers who competed in the state tournament in Huntington last weekend, two finished among the top six in their weight classes. The team placed seventeenth among the A-AA schools competing.
Levi Jarvis, a freshman, earned fifth place at 160 while Bryson Dennison finished in sixth. Coach Beane commented that he was “very pleased with what both these boys did.”
Beane continued to say that Jarvis is only the third Braxton County High freshman to place in the state wrestling tournament. “Kelly Morris placed fifth at 138, and Anthony Crist was second at 103,” he said, adding “Levi did a great job considering that he wrestled in a weight class usually filled by upperclassman.”
The coach was equally impressed with Dennison’s achievement. “Bryson, who placed sixth at 138 last year, did a remarkable job of coming back after having knee surgery not long ago. He also moved up in weight classes from the position he had before his surgery.” Beane also mentioned that, for the past two years, Dennison has not only qualified for but also placed in the state track meet.
After they both made it to the quarterfinals, the two wrestlers went separate ways. In that round, Jarvis pinned Hunter Haines of Cameron to go on to the semifinal round. Kane Roush of Wahama decisioned Dennison, who moved to consolations. Then, in semi-finals, Greenbrier West’s Malik Boatwright, who won the state championship at 160, pinned Jarvis to send him to consolations.
In consolation semi-finals, Jarvis lost a decision to Jacob Mellett of Keyser. Dennison made it to the consolation semis by pinning Wyoming East’s Danny Arnott in the second round of consolations and scoring a fall over Ryan Stewart of Clay in the third round. However, he was pinned by Rodeheaver of Keyser in the consolation semi-finals.
Both Braxton wrestlers then wrestled for fifth place. There, Jarvis earned fifth by pinning Luke Scott of Roane County. Cole Boatright of Calhoun decisioned Dennison, who finished sixth.
The Eagles’ third state qualifier, Caleb Whitney, 145, met Anthony Alvarez of Fairmont East in the first round. Alvarez, who won the state championship in that weight class, scored a decision over Whitney. Then, in the first round of consolations, Whitney lost another decision, this one to Austin Cook of Sissonville.
Regarding his team’s work on the state level and Braxton’s placement as a team, Coach Beane said, “It’s pretty good when you take only three kids, and two of them place. It’s also good that just three guys can give their team seventeenth place among all of those A-AA schools.” Already looking forward to next year, the Eagles’ coach emphasized, “We will have all of our kids back next year,” and the veteran coach is definitely looking forward to it.