CHAPMANVILLE - Can anyone in the state of West Virginia beat the Chapmanville Tigers?
It hasn't hasn't happened so far this season and didn't happen last season either.
Going into this week's action, the top-ranked and defending state champion Chapmanville Regional High School boys' basketball team has a 38-game in-state winning streak dating all the way back to the 2017 Class AA state title game in a contest won by Fairmont Senior, 59-54, at the Charleston Civic Center.
Chapmanville is 16-2 this season with the only two losses coming to out-of-state powerhouses. The Tigers lost 48-46 in overtime to Cincinnati Oak Hills, Ohio, back on Dec. 27 in the Rock Holiday Classic in Orlando, Florida.
Later on, the Tigers fell 66-64 to Liberty Heights, North Carolina in the Martin Luther King Showcase in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Jan. 19.
Last season, Chapmanville was 27-1, only falling 71-58 to Lebanon, Tennessee, in a holiday tournament at Pigeon Forge.
"We are wanting to keep our streak in West Virginia alive," Chapmanville coach Brad Napier said. "We're real proud of that. We haven't been beaten going on two years by a team inside the state. That's one of our goals. To stay undefeated. We've been on a great little run and our guys are really proud of that. They want to stay undefeated."
UP NEXT: Chapmanville has four games left in the regular season and will be heavily favored to win all of those games. That would put CRHS at 20-2 heading into the upcoming sectional tournament.
The Tigers were slated to host struggling Mingo Central (2-16) on Tuesday. CRHS travels to Sissonville (3-12) on Friday, Feb. 15, then hosts Wayne (5-14) on Saturday, Feb. 16, before closing out the regular season on Feb.19 at home against Hebert Hoover (11-7).
"We're going to try to win these last four games. Three of them are at home," Napier said. "We have one road game left. We're looking to finish strong in these last four."
LOUD CROWD: Chapmanville ended up sweeping county rival and No. 3-ranked Logan with last Friday night's 59-53 win over the Wildcats at Willie Akers Arena.
The Tigers had beaten Logan 51-47 on Jan. 31 at home.
Last Friday's announced crowd was a capacity 2,700, however, 3,000 fans were in the building as the stage was utilized for additional seating. There were fans standing in the four corners as well.
Napier, a former Logan assistant coach under Mark Hatcher, said it was an incredible atmosphere for a high school basketball game.
"That was a great great high school atmosphere," Napier said. "You won't see a better atmosphere in the country for a high school basketball game. That maybe the loudest I've heard Willie Akers Arena and I've been in that gym a lot for a lot of big games. But I think that maybe the loudest I've ever heard it."
SECTIONAL SEEDS: The seedings for the upcoming Class AA Region 4 Section 2 tournament will be known next week but the Tigers are a shoo-in for the top spot. No. 2 Logan (17-3) and No. 10 Lincoln County (17-2) seem to be fighting it out for the 2/3 seeds with Logan holding the edge, while Scott (13-6) trails in the likely No. 4 spot.
The Skyhawks and Panthers have split in two meetings this season. Lincoln County also has two wins over Man and is red hot, having gone 17-1 after falling 98-95 to Scott in the season opener.
The remaining sectional teams are Man (9-9) and Mingo Central.
If all goes to plan and barring any upsets, Chapmanville and Logan could meet for a third time this season in the sectional championship game. Since neutral site gyms at CRHS, Logan and Mingo Central will be used again for the sectional tournament, the game would be played at Mingo Central atop Miner Mountain.
Chapmanville beat Logan, 57-40, in last year's sectional finals, also at Mingo.
The sectional seeds are voted on and determined by the coaches.
AMONG THE LEADERS: Chapmanville has had a balanced scoring attack this season. Junior 6-9 center Obinna Anochili-Killen is sixth in the Cardinal Conference in scoring at 14.6 points per game heading into this week's action.
Devin Collins, Chapmanville's 6-8 senior guard/forward, is seventh at 14.3.
Logan's David Early leads the Cardinal Conference in scoring at 27.2 points a game. He was last year's scoring champion and will likely repeat that honor by season's end. Nitro's Joel Sweat (21.1) is second and Scott's Jon Jon Hamilton (19.8) is third. Sissonville's Will Hackney (19.6) is fourth and Jagger Bell of Scott (18.3) is fifth in the league in scoring.
STATE FINALS REMATCH?: Barring any major post-season tournament upsets, both Chapmanville and Logan hope to both advance to the upcoming state tourney and represent Region 4 in the Capitol City.
It almost happened last year. Chapmanville advanced to state with a resounding win at home over Nitro in the regional co-final. Logan went on the road at Winfield and narrowly lost in a 55-50 game.
If Logan and Chapmanville meet again in the sectional finals, the winner would again have homecourt advantage in the regionals, while the loser would have to travel and do it on the road.
If both the Tigers and Cats advance that could possibly set up a state tournament matchup at the Charleston Civic Center.
Chapmanville would likely hold onto the top seed. Fairmont, last year's state runner-ups to the Tigers, is currently ranked No. 2 in the state, while Logan is third and Bluefield fourth.
With the way the brackets are set up, that would mean Chapmanville and Logan would possibly match up in the state finals.
If all serves are held and if there's no upsets, a potential Chapmanville vs. Bluefield and Logan vs. Fairmont semifinal Friday could be on tap.
Then if Logan and Chapmanville advance they would meet in the state championship game.
THREE-PEAT IN THE CARDINAL: With four games left in the regular season, it's highly likely the Tigers will win all of those and finish a perfect 13-0 in the Cardinal Conference, winning the school's third straight league crown.
Second place Logan is currently 10-2 in conference play with just one league game left - this Friday night's tilt at Scott. Logan has a non-conference game against Man on February 18 at home in the regular season finale.
In the balanced Cardinal Conference North Division, Winfield currently leads with a 7-4 league mark. Nitro is 6-4, Herbert Hoover 5-4 and Poca 6-6.
A REMARKABLE RUN: It's been a remarkable four-year run for Coach Napier and the Tigers.
In his four years at the helm at Chapmanville, Napier has led CRHS to an 85-17 record, an 83.3 winning percentage.
The Tigers are seeking their fourth straight state tournament appearance and fifth in their last six years.
Chapmanville's state tournament run began in 2014 under former Coach Allan Hatcher as the Tigers lost 63-34 to Bluefield in the state quarterfinals.
In 2015, CRHS slipped to 12-9, losing 46-43 to Wayne in the sectional tourney at Logan.
Napier's first season resulted in a 17-9 campaign in 2016 as the Tigers' upset bid over the then defending Class AA state champion and Cardinal Conference rival Poca Dots was foiled in a 30-28 quarterfinal loss. The Dots were coming off a 27-0 season in 2015 which resulted in a 59-53 win over Fairmont Senior in the state title game.
In 2017, Chapmanville was 23-5 and state runner-ups to Fairmont. Last year resulted in a state championship and 27-1 mark.
Napier has a 5-2 record in state tournament games.
Paul Adkins is the sports editor of the Logan Banner. Follow him on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.