The Lady Tigers thought they would at least get the No. 2 seed for next week’s Class AA sectional tournament at Williamson, meaning they would get a first-round bye and would need just one win in order to advance to the sectional finals.
With that one win, the Lady Tigers would then automatically get a berth in the upcoming 2A regional tournament.
But that would have been the easy way.
Chapmanville must now do it the hard way.
Before Tuesday night’s game with rival Scott — a 58-39 loss at home to the Lady Hawks — Chapmanville was surprised it had been placed as the No. 3 sectional seed behind Tolsia, who was put at second.
That means the Lady Tigers must possibly make three trips to the Williamson Fieldhouse next week.
Chapmanville is matched up against No. 6 seed Wayne on Monday night at 8 in a first-round contest. No. 4 Tug Valley plays No. 5 Mingo Central in Monday’s other sectional game at 6 p.m.
No. 1 ranked Scott, the state’s second-rated team behind undefeated Westside, gets an opening-round bye and will await the Tug Valley-Mingo Central winner next Wednesday at 6 p.m. Chapmanville would then play Tolsia on Wednesday at 8 p.m. if it is able to get past the Wayne Pioneers.
The championship game is set for next Friday, Feb. 24 at 7:30 p.m. at Williamson.
While Scott was the clear-cut No. 1 in the section, the Lady Tigers thought it would leapfrog over Tolsia in the seedings, which were voted on by the six sectional tourney team coaches.
Chapmanville and Tolsia are indeed very close but the Lady Tigers thought they had an edge over the Rebels when looked at it more closely with a couple of factors.
Chapmanville split with Tolsia during the regular season with the Rebels winning 48-41 at CRHS and the Lady Tigers taking a 54-49 victory at Glenhayes.
The Lady Tigers, though, finished second in the Cardinal Conference standings, while Tolsia was third. Chapmanville stands at 15-4 overall and 9-2 in the league heading into Saturday night’s closer at Sissonville. Tolsia is 17-4 overall and 8-3 in the conference.
Chapmanville also owns a split over Scott as the Lady Tigers won 54-50 this season over the Lady Hawks at Madison.
Tolsia lost twice to the Lady Hawks, losing 70-57 and 44-35.
On the other hand, when looking at other common opponents, the Rebels routed Class A Buffalo 77-51, while the Lady Tigers lost to the Lady Bison 54-53 back on Dec. 16 in the Hoops Classic at the Charleston Civic Center.
Tolsia, also, had an edge on Chapmanville in the Associated Press media poll where the Rebels closed out the season ranked No. 4 in the state while the Lady Tigers were fifth.
Scott enters the tourney 18-2 heading into Friday night’s regular season finale against Point Pleasant at home. Tug Valley is 11-11, while Mingo Central stands at 10-12 going into the tournament.
Chapmanville’s opponent, Wayne, lost twice this season to the Lady Tigers by 63-42 and 47-42 scores.
“We’re focusing on Wayne. Our game on Saturday in inconsequential,” Chapmanville coach David Williamson said after the Scott game this week. “We got the number three seed and split with Tolsia. The coaches rankings were already in before this game. How we finished number three on the ballots I have no clue. To be honest I’d like to see the ballots. We split with Tolsia but we have a win over Scott and they don’t. We had a better conference record. We had 17 or 18 common opponents and played in the same league. I just don’t know.”
The Lady Tigers will have a tough task with a possible four straight road trips this week counting Saturday’s contest at Sissonville in the regular season finale.
A sectional win over Wayne would then set up Wednesday night’s showdown with Tolsia in the semifinals.
“It’s all four-lane to get there and it’s not country roads but it will be tough,” Williamson said. “We’re going to have to play four away games in a week.”
Williamson said it should be a good sectional tourney.
“I think Scott, Tolsia and us are all state quality teams,” he said. “One of us will have to sit at home but that’s tournament basketball. We got the three seed. I don’t care if we win by one point on Monday. It’s tournament basketball and you have to survive and advance. Our goal is to make it back to Charleston and that goal is still in front of us.”
The Lady Tigers are looking for their second straight trip to the state tournament. CRHS lost to defending state champion Summers County in the state tourney last year.
Chapmanville is led by senior guard Kelli Garrett, the team’s leading scorer. Other starters include: Kristin DesRocher, senior forward/center Kaylee Maynard, Katelynn Hall and guard Hailey Price. Several other Chapmanville players have played key roles off the bench as well this season.