CHARLESTON, W.Va. — No. 1 Wheeling Central sank 12 3-pointers, shooting its way into the Class A state title game with a 71-54 victory over fourth-seeded Clay Battelle.
A day after surviving an overtime scare from No. 8 Parkersburg Catholic, the Maroon Knights (24-3) never trailed.
“What a difference a day makes. We came out today with a sense of purpose and played well,” Wheeling Central coach Mel Stephens said. “Putting them in a hole early forced them to try to hurry things on offense.”
David Park delivered 21 points and nine rebounds, while Chase Harler added 17 points and a game-high six assists. The surprising contribution came from their wingman reserve Boyd Bibey, who poured in 18 points, including 5-of-10 from 3-point range.
“I tend to get open a little more on the wing against a zone,” Bibey said. “Chase and David did a good job in looking for me and my shots were going in tonight.”
Clay-Battelle (21-6) was paced by Tristan Haught and Zach Chisler with 15 points each.
“I told my guys we needed to show all heart, and we did and played to the last whistle,” Haught said.
Cannon Brummage finished with 10 points and seven rebounds for Clay-Battelle, but admitted having a tough defensive assignment against Park and Harler.
“It got to the point where I was going for everything,” Brummage said. “We were taught to stay down low and move our feet, but when they’re that quick it was almost impossible to guard the shot and the drive.”
Wheeling Central will be appearing in its first Class A title game since winning back-to-back titles in 2008-09. It also won four straight from 2002-05.