Pendleton County’s grit and determination was just enough to stymie the Yellow Jackets in the Hive by a score of 56-46 last Friday to remain undefeated.
Moorefield attacked first after a defensive rebound by Brent Moran taking the ball down the court scoring underneath the hoop.
The Wildcats missed another field goal, then Moorefield’s Lane Ours blocked a shot before Pendleton County walked.
There was a scramble for the ball and Moran retrieved it, but the Yellow Jackets hit the rim and Pendleton County’s Josh Alt grabbed the board.
Pendleton County’s Laird Sweet was whistled for a charge as fans from the humongous crowd shouted with Moorefield’s Thomas Williams holding his ground.
“We were happy defensively in the first half, but offensively we were not on the string at all. We were not playing together and the scoreboard was indicative of that. In the second half, they went to a zone and we were able to go on a little run there. We moved the ball and shared the ball, guys were playing together. We found the ball in the zone and made the best shot that we could. Moorefield made some great pressure in the closing minutes, so I am not happy how we handled that. We will look at the film and learn from it,” Pendleton County coach Ryan Lambert stated.
There were several missed field goals over the next couple of minutes.
After a Yellow Jackets turnover, Alt garnered a jumper for the Wildcats to tie the game at the 4:01 mark.
Moorefield answered with a spin by Chase Vance past defenders for a score on the ensuing possession to regain the lead.
The last two minutes of the first period featured ten combined points scored as Bailey Thompson made three baskets for Pendleton County and the Yellow Jackets had buckets made by Williams and Vance with the last score by Thompson tying the game at 8-all.
A charge was called on Moran to end the first period with Pendleton County’s Isaiah Gardiner taking the impact.
The Wildcats started the second period on a 6-nil run with two kippers by Sweet sandwiching a shot by Tanner Townsend over a three minute plus span.
The Yellow Jackets missed four attempts and committed a turnover during that stretch.
Williams drew a foul on a block attempt from Pendleton County’s Taylor Wimer and made both free throws for Moorefield at the 4:23 mark to stop the run, 14-10.
“We were very disciplined defensively in the first half and did our job, button the second half we were less focused and didn’t box out so they got some second chance shots that hurt us. I am proud of our effort, but we made some mental mistakes at the end of the game,” Moorefield coach Scott Stutler remarked.
After the Wildcats walked, Moorefield missed a shot and Gardiner grabbed the rebound.
Moran blocked a shot and hauled in the ricochet before being called for a charge moments later.
Alt hit a jumper with the ball rolling around the rim and into the net for Pendleton County at 2:59, but the Yellow Jackets responded with a field goal by Vance to make it 16-14.
Over a minute later, Moorefield had missed three baskets despite two turnovers by the Wildcats and Trevor Shoemaker managed to score on a putback for the Yellow Jackets at 1:12.
Thompson knocked down a shot on the ensuing possession to give Pendleton County an 18-14 halftime advantage. Moorefield’s Yosef Malaki made a steal in the closing seconds.
Moran collected an offensive rebound for the Yellow Jackets to start the third period and passed to Vance for a basket at 7:43.
Pendleton County lost the ball and Vance netted a free throw on the next trip down the floor, 18-17.
The Wildcats kept a series alive with two rebounds and finally got the shot to fall by Gardiner.
Both teams missed shots with rebounds by Alt and Thompson, then Thompson plowed through the Yellow Jackets for a basket.
Vance completed an old-fashioned three-point play as the Yellow Jackets cut the deficit to 22-20 at the 5:51 mark.
There were two field goals missed on both sides, then Moorefield’s Lane Ours blocked two consecutive attempts before Alt collected the ball and scored for the Wildcats at 4:12.
Thompson made a couple of layups for Pendleton County as the lead expanded to 29-21 with 2:40 left in the third period.
Sweet snatched a rebound, then Shoemaker blocked a shot.
Two free throws were made by Sweet moments later as the Wildcats created a double digit lead, 31-21.
Vance nailed a jumper for the Yellow Jackets over Alt’s stretching arm, then Malaki swatted the ball to forcing a turnover with Vance fielding the ricochet and taking the ball to the hoop to cut the deficit to 31-25 at 1:13.
Pendleton County recorded one more basket to close the third period on a baseline run by Sweet.
Vance blocked a shot to commence the final stanza for the Yellow Jackets, then Moran hauled in an offensive rebound drawing a foul and netting one free throw.
Sweet made a bucket in the paint, then Moorefield responded with a spinning jumper by Shoemaker at 6:39 for a 35-28 score.
The Wildcats built a 41-29 lead with four and a half minutes remaining, then Moorefield notched a 3-pointer by Williams at the 4:22 mark.
Pendleton County broke the press and Alt netted a basket off an assist from Thompson, then the Yellow Jackets walked.
Thompson fed Sweet on the ensuing possession for a 45-32 score with 3:23 to go.
Moran and Williams made a pair of free throws one minute apart sandwich a field goal by Lat for a 48-36 score with 1:49 left.
Moorefield’s Coleman Mongold made a steal during the press, then was called for a charge.
Mongold made another steal and this time Vance assisted Mongold on a 3-pointer with 1:28 remaining, 48-39.
Pendleton County knocked down two free throws, then Ours grabbed an offensive rebound and found Vance for a 3-pointer.
There was a foul during the shot away from the ball and Williams made both free throws as the Yellow Jackets cut the deficit to 50-44 with 1:04 on the clock.
Moorefield missed four shot attempts down the stretch as the Wildcats collected four free throws plus a jumper to created a 56-44 advantage with 21 seconds to go.
Moorefield ’s Lane Ours made a put-back for the final shot of the game as the Wildcats won 56-46.
Vance scored a game-high 20 points, followed by Williams with nine markers.
Sweet led Pendleton County with 16 points, followed by Alt with 15 and Thompson with 14.
Moorefield JV edged the Wildcats 33-31 in overtime as Dean Keplinger hit a 3-pointer to tie the game and Silas Inskeep scored the game-winning jumper.
Keplinger led the Yellow Jackets with ten points.