By J. Daniel Rollins
Register-Herald Sports Writer
The high school boys basketball season may be winding down, but the action will be heating up this weekend as many local teams will take the court, hoping to make their presence felt with the sectional tournament right around the corner.
n West Virginia HIT Division 2 Championship
The Hometown Invitational Tournament showcases the state’s top public Class A teams across the state. The Division 2 Championship will be played tonight at the Summersville Arena and Conference Center when Meadow Bridge takes on Haden at 8 p.m. The event will also feature three other games for sevneth, fifth and third place. Former Mountaineer standout Joe Mazulla will be in attendance signing autographs tonight.
n PikeView at
The Class AAA Shady Spring Tigers look to rebound from a tough road loss to Wyoming East on Tuesday night when they welcome Class AA rival PikeView to town. Shady is led by the hot shooting Chase Connor, who is rumored to be on West Virginia University head coach Bob Huggins’ watchlist. The game will tip at 7:30 p.m.
n Westside at
The two bitter Wyoming County rivals will do battle in New Richmond at 7:30 p.m. The two schools have split victories this season, with Wyoming East winning 67-57 on Jan. 4 in Clear Fork, while Westside defeated Wyoming East 82-64 in last week’s Big Atlantic Classic. It was the first time in five years the Renegades have defeated the Warriors. Look for Westside’s Corey Bowles and Wyoming East’s Austin Canada to have good nights.
n Bluefield at
In one of the more anticipated matchups of the weekend, the Class AA No. 1 Bluefield Beavers will travel to Fairlea to challenge the Class AAA No. 5 Greenbrier East Spartans. Each team has suffered only one loss this season with Bluefield’s coming at the hands of Princeton early in the season, while the Spartans were upset by the scrappy Point Pleasant Big Blacks in the Big Atlantic Classic. The game will feature five of the area’s most talked about players: Bluefield’s guard combo of Lykel Collier and Anthony Eades and Greenbrier East’s Rondale Watson, Bryce Woodliff and the 6-foot-9 Obi Romeo.
n St. Albans at Woodrow Wilson
No team may be playing better in the state right now than AAA No. 3 Woodrow Wilson. The Flying Eagles have won 10 straight games, knocking off George Washington and Morgantown last week. Beckley’s living by their mantra “refuse to lose”, given to them by coach Ron Kidd after a tough 4-4 start. Junior guard Donte Nabors has been making his case for player of the year this season, averaging 21 points a game and helping the Flying Eagles jump up seven spots in the latest AP Rankings. Tip-off will be at 7:30 p.m. at the Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center.
n Tug Valley at Greater Beckley Christian
To the surprise of many, Greater Beckley Christian has flown under the radar as one of the top Class A teams in the state this season, currently ranked eighth in the AP rankings. The Crusaders (10-1) will welcome Class A No. 2 Tug Valley into the Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center for this game tipping at 7:30 p.m. Tug Valley handed Greater Beckley its only loss of the season, a 74-61 defeat on Jan. 11. The game will mark the return of coaching legend and GBC assistant Dave Barksdale to the court that also bears his name. The Crusaders are led by a three-headed guard attack of Elisha Kidd, Javonne Staunton-Bailey and Keith Mullins. If you haven’t seen GBC yet, this one is a can’t miss.
n Independence at Summers County
Things haven’t been going as well for Independence this year as coach Chad Perkins had hoped. The Patriots are 3-11 on the season, and things likely won’t turn around for them against a tough Summers County team. The Bobcats are coming off of a series of tough losses to Bluefield and Wyoming East and will hope to turn things around before the sectional tournament gets started. Tip-off for this one will be at 5:30 p.m.
n West Virginia HIT Division 1 Championship
Summersville Arena will play host to eight games on Saturday as the HIT draws to a close. Games will start at 9 a.m. with the 15th place game and will finish with the championship game at 7:30 p.m. Local teams Fayetteville, Greenbrier West, Midland Trail and Valley will be in action.
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