CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A dominant third quarter on Friday pushed Chapmanville Regional to its first boys basketball championship game as the Tigers beat No. 7 Lincoln 57-40.
6-foot-8 freshman Obinna Anochili-Killen stole the show for No. 3 Chapmanville (23-4), finishing with 14 points, 12 rebounds, eight blocks and several slam dunks.
“It’s a night and day difference (for Anochili-Killen),” said head coach Brad Napier. “Early in the year he was a totally different kid. He’s been everywhere in the last five or six games – rebounding, blocking shots, scoring, put-backs, everything, really.”
Chapmanville led 22-21 at the break, but gained separation with a 20-7 third quarter. Dylan Smith’s 3-point bucket as the third quarter clock expired gave the Tigers a 42-28 lead heading into the fourth.
“We got okay looks (early), but we didn’t get great looks,” Napier said. “In the second half we did get great looks. Guys were able to take their time a little more and step into their shots. We were a lot more patient and more composed in the second half.”
The loss for Lincoln (13-14) ends an improbable postseason run that saw the Cougars ride sectional and regional momentum to a quarterfinal upset of No. 2 Bluefield on Thursday.
“I think this season was a life lesson for the whole team, including the coaches,” Lincoln coach Jordan Toth said. “We went through a lot of adversity, losing close game after close game – it takes a toll on you.
“But you have to go to work, you have to roll up your sleeves and stay positive,” he continued. “We have nothing to be ashamed of. That upset (Thursday) will live in my memory and these kids’ memories for a long, long time.”
Lincoln was led by Chase Riley who scored 19 points.
The Tigers will play either defending champion Fairmont Senior or Mingo Central on Saturday at 2:30 p.m.
“I’m just happy for these guys,” Napier said. “They work extremely hard on their game and I’m proud of them. I’m just happy for the community and our school.”
MetroNews will have live video streaming of all three title games Saturday at the MetroNews Channel of WVMetroNews.com.