Looking for another shot to capture the Battlefield District girls basketball tournament crown, the Eastern View Cyclones rallied from deficits in the second half of Tuesday’s semifinal game against Chancellor, but in the end fell tantalizingly short, 58–57.
The Chargers snapped Eastern View’s seven-game win streak and guaranteed their second straight district title appearance, matched up with undefeated tournament host King George on Thursday. The Foxes advanced with a convincing 66–36 victory over Spotsylvania.
“If we made our free throws [at the end], we could have sealed it,” Chargers coach William Griffin said. “They’re a great team,. They throw a punch and we throw it right back. That’s the thing: My girls don’t give up.”
Senior guard Iris Moore misfired on four straight free throw attempts in the final 10 seconds, but still played a major factor, totaling a game-high 25 points as well as five steals, six rebounds and five assists.
“Everyone contributed to play on defense. We all played as a team and that’s how we came away with this win,” she said.
Added teammate Taylor Collins, who had a team-high 15 rebounds: “I wouldn’t say we had a team leader, but she [Morris] significantly helps us out a lot.” .
In two regular-season encounters, Eastern View bested Chancellor 58–56 and 64–50.
“Two evenly matched teams that play hard and leave it all out there,” Cyclones coach Mike McCombs surmised. “Chance in the last 30 seconds to tie it up and get the ball; it wasn’t meant to be. We missed a lot of shots. The ball didn’t bounce our way tonight. It goes like that sometimes.”
Sophomore Terese Greene paced the Cyclones with 23 points. Kendra Williams added 13 points, while Sarah Hatfield contributed 15 rebounds, six points and three assists.
In Region 4B first-round action Monday, Chancellor entertains Courtland and Caroline travels to Hanover. The first-round winners will face Eastern View and King George, respectively, in quarterfinal action on Wednesday. The Foxes are seeded second behind Patrick Henry-Ashland.
Chancellor (14-9): Melody Washington 0, Jasmine Talley 7, Bianca Atkinson 9, M’laya Ainsworth 3, Isis Moore 25, Taylor Collins 4, M’kayla Ainsworth 10, Kaitlyn Bestick 0, Jackie Fagan 0, Zaniah Lucas 0. Totals: 19 16-29 58.
Eastern View (17-6): Makayla McCombs 5, Terese Greene 23, Anya Lawson 4, Trinity Washington 4, Sarah Hatfield 6, McKenna Warren 0, Gianna Gilmore 0, Kendra Williams 13, Maylasia Simmons 2, Montana Hoffman 0, Christa Brown 0, Chantel Moore 0. Totals: 24 7-12 57.
3-pointers: Chancellor 4 (Talley, M’laya Ainsworth, Atkinson, Moore). EV 2 (Greene, Williams).
KING GEORGE 66, SPOTSYLVANIA 36
Junior forward Oma Agulou totaled 15 points, six rebounds, six steals and four assists as the Foxes improved to 22–0.
Team captain Halia Ellis also had a strong overall game with 15 points, nine assists, nine rebounds, two steals and a blocked shot. Brianna Martin and Aiyana Ellis combined for 21 points and 11 rebounds.
“Hard to say we’re playing bad when we win games, but there is still some fine-tuning we need to do,” Foxes coach Neil Lyburn said.
“. . . Defensively, we have the tendency sometimes to get a little bit relaxed and get out-of-position. Thing is, we’re athletic and that helps us out a lot.”
Nakiya Bumgardner had 20 points for the Knights (7–16), who advance to the Region 3B playoffs and will play as yet to be determined opponent in the first round.
Spotsylvania (7-16): Nakiyah Bumgardner 20, Mariah Evans 8, Breana Donnell 3, Taylor Krause 0, Haleigh Perkins 0, Zion Johnson 0, Justiz Ballard 2, Alicia Gray 0, Anastasia Tracy 1, Caterina Tracy 2. Totals: 13 7-12 36.
King George (22-0): Lauren Sheehan 0, Brianna Martin 10, Oma Aguolu 15, Halia Ellis 15, Katherine Healey 2, Gabby Mack 4, Loren Tolliver 3, Aiyana Ellis 11, Lauren McCall 4, Kaiya Young 2. Totals: 28 5-10 66.
3-pointers: Spotsylvania 3 (Bumgarner 2, Donnell). King George 5 (H. Ellis 3, Aguolu, Tolliver).