Second half turnaround paces Bears
NEW MANCHESTER – The Oak Glen and Weir girls’ basketball teams have played plenty of memorable games throughout the years, especially in the postseason.
Monday night’s affair inside the Oak Glen Fieldhouse featured one of the more drastic turnarounds in the storied history of the series.
The Red Riders built a 25-14 lead early in the third quarter, but the Golden Bears responded to outscore the visitors 34-13 the rest of the way en route to a 48-38 victory in a West Virginia Class AA Region 1 Section 1 Quarterfinal.
“The girls just woke up,” Oak Glen (14-8) head coach Scott Wiley said about what caused the change in the game. “We started really flat. Weir was much more aggressive. I was disappointed with our start.
“Who would have thought going zone would have gotten us back into the game? Usually, you have to go man. We went to a zone defense, and it worked. Plus, we made buckets.
“I always tell them the third quarter is the most important quarter of the game, and we outscored them 17-7 in the third quarter. In the fourth quarter, we outscored them 19-9.
“We started making buckets inside.”
The Red Riders couldn’t keep up the strong play for 32 minutes.
“I thought we played exceptionally well in the first half,” Weir (6-14) head coach Bill Smith said. “We rebounded. We got the ball up and down the floor. We converted some easy shots.
“In the second half, it was the opposite. They outrebounded us. They got some easy shots in the paint. They played harder than us.
“Once they got the lead, the crowd got into it.”
Oak Glen will play at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Fairmont Senior.
“It is definitely going to be a tough game,” Wiley said. “Fairmont Senior is ranked No. 1 in AA.
“I haven’t seen them, but to be ranked No. 1 they have to have good posts, good guards, good height and good quickness. We are going to have to be patient. We are going to have to go down their loose. Hopefully, we can shock the world.”
Only eight players – four on each team – scored in the battle of the Hancock County schools.
Vanessa Hissam scored a game-high 21 points for Oak Glen and Logan Andrew netted 13 points.
Alyssa Shingle and Raegan Stead each scored in double digits for the Red Riders. Shingle tallied a team-high 17 points, while Stead collected 13 points.
Hissam scored the first two points of the game to give the Golden Bears a 2-0 lead, but the Red Riders scored the next nine points to build a 9-2 advantage on a basket by Selena Wolverton with 2:06 left to play in the quarter.
Early in the third quarter, a three-point play by Shingle gave the Red Riders their biggest lead of the game at 25-14, but the rest of the game belonged to the girls from the northern part of the county.
“I don’t think the girls were nervous,” Wiley said. “The game last week against Brooke helped. The girls are pretty confident playing at home. The girls stayed positive.
“Our shots were just not failing. We were getting them. We just weren’t making them. We stuck with it.
“Our post is our game with Vanessa and Jessica inside. We started getting shots to fall, and that opened things up for us.”
The Golden Bears battled back thanks to two runs in the quarter. The first was a 6-0 spurt making the score 25-20, and then they ended the frame on an 8-0 to tie the score at 29 entering the fourth quarter following a basket by Andrews.
The victors also scored the first six points of the fourth quarter to increase the run to 14-0 and their advantage to 34-29.
Another 8-0 run gave Oak Glen a 42-32 lead forcing Weir to call timeout with 4:25 showing on the scoreboard clock. The Red Riders were only able to get within seven points the rest of the way.
“Oak Glen is able to do that to you,” Smith said. “We did not adapt. Consequently, we lost the game.”
Weir led 11-3 after the first quarter.
“I don’t know if it was nerves,” Wiley said. “The girls are not used to playing in front of a big crowd. It was great to see the fans and the student body come out.
“I don’t think they did anything different. I think we just played flat, and our shots did not fall. We shot some air balls from inside the paint. We looked at the shot chart, and we were getting a lot of shots, but we just weren’t making any.
“We were real timid.
“In the second half, we made a couple.”
The Red Riders extended their lead in the second stanza. Shingle started the quarter with a basket making the score 13-3, and Weir went on to lead by 10 points three other times in the stanza.
The visitors led 22-12 at halftime.
The game was the final one for Weir’s seven seniors – Wolverton, Shingle, Madison Dalrymple, Lindsey Robinson, Ashlynn Drizake, Michayla Dobosz and Chantelle Harper.
“We are losing seven bodies,” Smith said. “Anytime you lose seven seniors it is going to be difficult to replace them.
“They stuck around for four years. They took part in the things we do during the summer. They are all good kids. They do well academically. They will be sorely missed.
“Every year is different. You think about what you could have done and things you didn’t do. It is time to go back to the drawing board.”
Oak Glen 48, Weir 38
Weir 11 11 7 9 – 38
Oak Glen 3 9 17 19 – 48
WEIR (6-14): Wolverton 3 0-0 6, Stead 5 1-2 13, Shingle 7 1-1 17, Robinson 0 0-0 0, Drizake 0 0-0 0, Dobosz 0 0-0 0, Dalrymple 1 0-1 2. Totals: 16 3-6 38. 3-Pointers: Shingle 2, Stead.
OAK GLEN (14-8): Arnott 3 1-2 7, Witherow 0 0-0 0, Evans 0 0-0 0, Andrews 5 3-4 13, Feicht 0 0-0 0, Hissam 10 1-4 21, Stivason 3 1-2 7. Totals: 21 6-12 48.