The No. 3 seed Spring Valley Timberwolves got 21 points off turnovers to defeat the No. 6 seed Beckley Woodrow Wilson Flying Eagles, 59-47, on Tuesday morning in the opening round of the WVSSAC Class AAAA Girls Basketball State Tournament at the Charleston Civic Center.
Woodrow Wilson (16-9) took a slim lead in the opening period at 9-8. The Timberwolves’ (21-4) defense started taking over in the second quarter, forcing turnover after turnover to start the period on an 11-2 run. The Flying Eagles fought back near the end of the first half, and Spring Valley took a 25-22 advantage into the locker room at the intermission.
The second half began the same way that the second quarter began. Spring Valley used a 7-0 run to stretch its lead to 35-25 in the opening minutes of the third period, thanks in part to continued defensive pressure. Spring Valley forced 16 turnovers overall. The Timberwolves led 42-30 heading into the fourth quarter. Woodrow Wilson cut the lead to seven late in the fourth quarter, but a a personal foul followed by an immediate technical foul with 1:08 remaining led to Spring Valley making 3-of-4 free throws to put the game on ice.
“I thought it was a really good team win for us,” said Spring Valley head coach Bo Miller. “Coming out and playing at 9:30 am is tough. In the first quarter, I don’t think we played as well as we could have. We started attacking the basket in the second quarter and played some really good defense that led to some baskets. A lot of those shots were high percentage in transition.”
Woodrow Wilson head coach Brian Nabors had a lot of praise for the Timberwolves.
“First of all, hat’s off to Spring Valley,” said Nabors. “They played a magnificent game. I’m proud of my girls. We fought and gave everything we had, but it just wasn’t our day. We just didn’t take care of the ball and played too passive at times. And they took advantage of us.”
Hallie Bailey and Dria Parker led Spring Valley with 16 points each. Bailey also dished out 8 assists. Haleigh Crum followed with 10 points and 6 rebounds. Brooklyn Ellis added 8 points. Alllie Daniels scored 6 points and pulled down 8 boards. Rianne Henson finished with 3 points in the win.
Abby Dillon paced Woodrow Wilson with 15 points. Lataja Creasey added 12 points. Keanti Thompson followed with 10 points. Josie Cross and Donya Burton had 4 points each. Leiloni Manns chipped in 2 points.
Spring Valley will next play on in the semifinals on Thursday in a match up against the No. 2 seed Morgantown Mohigans (20-4). The Mohigans defeated Princeton, 58-21, in their opening round contest. The opening tip is scheduled for 11:15 am.
Spring Valley (59) – Hallie Bailey 16, Dria Parker 16, Haleigh Crum 10, Brooklyn Ellis 8, Allie Daniels 6, Rianne Henson 3
Woodrow Wilson (47) – Abby DIllon 15, Lataja Creasey 12, Keanti Thompson 10, Josie Cross 4, Donya Burton 4, Leiloni Manns 2