- EAST FAIRMONT BEES
- Lady Bees EF Classic Mon. Jan 20th
- JV/Varsity Boys @ Buckhannon Wed. Jan 22nd
- Freshman Boys @ Buckhannon Tues. Jan 21st
Bees battle from behind to beat Preston 78-64
PLEASANT VALLEY – Any number of basketball coaches will tell you that their sport is a sport of runs and spurts.
East Fairmont High head coach Tyrone Asterino echoed the same sentiments on Friday night after the Bees hosted Class AAA opponent and Big 10 rival Preston at The Hive.
For East, it took one massive run to find themselves in a position to earn a victory on Friday night — and it came just when they needed it.
After entering halftime trailing the Knights, the Bees would battle back with an explosive third frame, nailing five three-point baskets and forcing seven turnovers as they would outscore Preston 248 to take a double-digit lead into the fourth quarter.
Preston would get their game back on track and match the Bees point-for-point in the fourth, but it was too little, too late as East would run away with a 78-64 victory.
“Our coaches preach to us in practice all the time that we don’t come out in the third quarter playing as hard as we need to, and they always get on our butts for it. So
SEE BEES, PAGE 3B
East Fairmont’s Ethan Harvey (1) dribbles while guared by Preston’s Austin Matheny (23) during Friday night’s game at East Fairmont. For a slideshow of photos, log on to timeswv.com.
PHOTO BY TAMMY SHRIVER
we’ve been telling ourselves to come out and play hard after halftime, and that’s what we’ve been doing,” said senior Ethan Harvey, who tallied eight of his 11 points in the third frame.
The Knights would carry a 36-34 advantage into the break on the back of a hot-handed performance from senior Nick Smith, who drained a trio of long-range buckets en route to a 20 point first half performance.
The Bees would switch to a man-to-man defense to contain Smith after the break — he would tally just two points in the third period — and use turnovers and transition offense to establish momentum.
“You know, to be honest, we came out and did some of the same things we did in the first half, but I think we just executed a little bit better. But we had some real good defensive work to turn them over, and then some real clutch shooting — we were in rhythm, and we play better when we’re playing in rhythm,” Asterino said.
Gavin Asterino paced the Bees with 24 points, while Luke Pollock barely missed a double-double with an 18 point, nine rebound game.
Aiden Slusser added 16 points and seven rebounds for the Bees while Harvey filled up the stat sheet with 11 points, eight assists, five rebounds, and four steals.
Smith led the Knights with 31 points and five rebounds.
Harvey's big 4th quarter buckets lead Bees past Lincoln
by Charles Casey CORRESPONDENT 21 hrs ago
Ethan Harvey made a pair of big buckets in the fourth quarter to lead East Fairmont past Lincoln.
SHINNSTON — Ethan Harvey made two big shots in the final two minutes to help East Fairmont hold off Lincoln, 54-53 in Big 10 Conference boys high school basketball action Wednesday night at Lincoln High School.
The game was tied 49 apiece after Lincoln’s Zach Snyder hit a 3-pointer with 2:42 left in the contest.
Just 24 seconds later, Harvey was left wide open at the top of the key and made the 3-pointer to give East Fairmont (4-5) a 52-49 advantage. Then after getting a defensive stop, Harvey drove to the basket for a layup to extend the margin to 54-49 with 1:16 to play.
“Ethan made two big shots when we needed them,” East Fairmont coach Tyrone Asterino said. “This was a good win for us on the road and what can you say about what a good high school basketball game this was and the atmosphere with Lincoln having its band playing. The crowds for both teams were electric and the game did not disappoint anybody here.”
Lincoln (6-4) got a 3-pointer from Sammy Bart to close the gap to two, 54-52, with 40 seconds remaining and then the Cougars defense forced an East turnover with 25 seconds to play.
At this point in the game, East Fairmont had committed only three team fouls, so it had three fouls to give down the stretch. The Bees executed the plan to perfection the first time, but it didn’t work the next time as Snyder was fouled shooting a 3-pointer with 9.3 seconds left on the clock.
Snyder made only one of three at the free throw line to keep East Fairmont ahead by a slim 54-53 spread.
Trey Rogers then missed the front end of a one-and-one situation and the Cougars raced up the floor. The Bees still had one foul to give but didn’t give it and Bart got a good look at a 3-pointer in the corner at the buzzer, but the shot didn’t fall and East Fairmont held on for the win.
“I thought our defense let us down the entire night, but we had our opportunities to win, we just did not do it,” Lincoln coach Jordan Toth said. “We didn’t rebound the basketball like we have all year and it always seemed like (East Fairmont) was finding open shots in our zone defense.”
The first half was both teams make huge runs as each team had one player get hot from 3-point range to key the surges.
Gavin Asterino made three of East Fairmont four treys in the first quarter for a 16-7 lead. Rogers had two early baskets and Aidan Slusser a driving layup in the first minute of the second quarter to give the Bees their biggest lead of the game — a 15-point, 22-7 margin with 7:04 left in the half.
“I am really proud of my guys for the way they battled all night long,” coach Asterino said. “They’re were many runs in this basketball game and we talk to our guys about runs and making the most of them when we can and we had the last one in the fourth quarter.”
But, the Cougars went on a 19-2 run keyed by Brayden White coming off the bench to hit four 3-pointers as Lincoln took a 26-24 advantage with 1:18 left until halftime.
The Bees led 28-26 at the half and each team held small leads in the third quarter before the game ended up tied 40-40 heading into the final exciting period of play.
Asterino finished the evening connecting on five 3-pointers for a game-high 17 points to East Fairmont. Luke Pollock followed with 13 points and grabbed a game-high eight rebounds. Rogers ended the evening with nine points and five assists for the Bees.
Snyder paced the Cougars with 14 points and four assists. White followed with 12 points, all on 3-point baskets, while Ryan Leep added eight points, five rebounds and four assists. Payton Hawkins finished with six points, three assists and three blocked shots for Lincoln.
East Fairmont nabs big win over Lincoln
East Fairmont pulled out a big-time 54-53 road conference win over Lincoln on Wednesday.
The victory improves the Bees 4-5 and snaps a three-game losing streak.
Gavin Asterino scored a team-high 17 points in the win for the Bees, while Luke Pollock also reached double figures with 13 points. Trey Rogers added another nine points for East, while Aiden Slusser had six points, Ethan Harvey had five points and Adam Earls had four points.
East Fairmont will play again Friday at home versus Preston.
Lady Bees Practice Schedule
Monday - January 13 - 3pm - 5:00pm
*****Tuesday - January 14 - GAME DAY*****
Home vs Lincoln
Wednesday - January 15 - 3pm - 5pm
*****Thursday - January 16 - GAME DAY*****
Away vs Preston County
Friday - January 17 - 3pm-5pm
Saturday - January 18 - 10am-12noon
*****Monday - January 20 - GAME DAY*****
EF CLASSIC ALL DAY
10am - Lewis Co. vs River View
12 noon - Elkins vs Frankfort
2pm - Lincoln vs Winfield
*****4pm - East Fairmont vs James Monroe*****
6pm - North Marion vs Martinsburg
*****Tuesday - January 21 - GAME DAY*****
Home vs Buckhannon Upshur
Girls basketball: Mingo Central bouncing back after difficult year-Knocks off East Fairmont in Wildcat Classic in Logan
- By Ryan Pritt Staff writer Charleston Gazette
Mingo Central’s Ziah Rhodes scored 20 points in Saturday’s win over East Fairmont.
LOGAN — A season ago, a fight among teammates derailed an otherwise promising season for Mingo Central.
This year, the Miners are fighting together, to put their program back on the map.
Central took another step toward that on Saturday, using a late scoring flurry with some guts and guile to outlast East Fairmont 61-56 at the Wildcat Classic Hoops Showcase at Logan.
The win moved the Miners to 5-2, a big step forward from last year’s 7-17 campaign, one which Mingo Central is striving to leave in the past.
In the team’s second game of the year, junior stars Ziah Rhodes and Katie Ball got into an altercation on the floor, one that eventually led to their suspensions and subsequent transfers to Belfry High School in Kentucky. It also led to coach Brandon Ball stepping down after three games, yielding to Nathaniel Siggers, who remains on the coaching staff now.
Ball and Rhodes were expected to carry the load a year ago, thrusting several youngsters into the fray in a rugged Cardinal Conference and Class AA Region 4.
But it’s a new year and a new Mingo, and under the guidance of former Burch player Kim Davis-Smith, the Miners are making strides. Davis-Smith was on Burch’s state-championship team in 1990, the only girls basketball state title won by a school in Mingo County.
In this her first year as a head coach, she’s striving to bring some of that championship mentality to the Miners.
“We have some of those kids back, but me coming in as a new coach, it’s definitely been a rebuilding process,” Davis-Smith said. “We are starting over, with everything. We have new uniforms, we’ve upgraded our locker room — we’ve really tried to invest in our kids, our program and our future.”
After a year away, Rhodes has returned and is flourishing in her senior season. Rhodes led all scorers with 20 points on Saturday and averaged just over that entering the game. The athletic combo guard has also bought into Davis-Smith’s philosophies and heightened leadership responsibilities.
“I think she’s embraced it well and she’s probably never had a coach like me,” Davis-Smith said. “I just hold them to a different level of accountability in practice, in life in general and how we present ourselves in public and at school. She’s done well with it and they all have and she is a phenomenal athlete.”
Scarlett Thomason was one of those players thrust into the spotlight a year ago and was the team’s lone double-digit scorer, averaging 14.3 points.
Now a junior, Thomason is complementing Rhodes in the backcourt and scored 18 points on Saturday, including a pivotal third-quarter stretch of eight straight to put the Miners ahead.
Madisyn Curry scored seven points off the bench with Zoe Evans and Maliyah Martin adding six points apiece. Jena Wagoner, a transfer from Tug Valley, came up with four foul shots down the stretch to help keep the Bees at arm’s length.
Kierra Bartholow hit six 3s to lead East Fairmont with 18 points. Somer Stover added 14 points and Avery Pack 11. The Bees (3-5) held a 34-23 advantage in rebounding.
With only losses against Winfield and North Laurel, Kentucky on the ledger, the Miners are off to a 3-1 start in the Cardinal Conference and should find themselves in the thick of a competitive Region 4 Section 2 that also features Chapmanville, Logan and Lincoln County among others.
The event featured a personal milestone for Summers County guard Taylor Isaac.
The Class A No. 4 Bobcats picked up a 61-47 win over Tug Valley in the game prior to the Mingo Central-East Fairmont tilt, with Isaac scoring 21 points to go over 1,000 for her career. Fellow junior Gavin Pivont led the team with 22 points.
East Fairmont spreads the wealth in 73-50 rout of Weir
TIMESWESTVIRGINIAN PLEASANT VALLEY — In their prior meeting in last season’s sectional quarterfinals East Fairmont and Weir went back and forth down to the wire in a breathtaking thriller the Red Riders eventually won on their home floor.
But in the rematch on Saturday at East Fairmont High School, the Bees had no problems breathing easy as they ripped off a 41-23 run over the second and third quarters to win in a 73-50 rout.
Seniors Aiden Slusser, Ethan Harvey and Luke Pollock tied for the team-lead with 12 points apiece, and the Bees had 12 players score in the game and seven tally five or more points.
Dakota Nutter scored a team-high 10 points to go with five rebounds for Weir, while Elijah Gillette and Sebastian Spencer tallied eight and seven points, respectively.
“It makes it more exciting for everybody. It’s a lot of fun and more of a team atmosphere,” said Slusser of the East’s balanced scoring and contributions across the roster. “We’re on the bench in the fourth quarter cheering for everybody...it makes it fun.”
As a team, the Bees (3-2) shot a blistering 53.8 percent from the field as their press gobbled up 20 turnovers for easy open-court opportunities and their half-court offense harnessed a rhythmic tempo around drive-and-kick attacks within prime spacing.
“Our press work leads to us getting pretty easy baskets a lot of times, but when our press isn’t working, we have to set up and execute and I think our execution is gettingbetter,” East Fairmont coach Tyrone Asterino said. “We have a lot of upperclassmen — we have 10 seniors in there who are playing — so it’s not like it’s something new to them. They’ve been in our system and know what we do.”
Aside from a handful of overzealous turnovers on hit-aheads, East’s offense cut up Weir’s half-court man-to-man and 1-2-2 full-court press with crisp ball movement and decisive dribble attacks. Pollock feasted on putbacks and a couple ofdesigned post touches off screens and duck-ins and Harvey stormed to the hoop on countless shouldercheck drives. Trey Rogers, who had seven points and a pair of assists, toasted Weir on closeout attacks, and Gavin Asterino, who had nine points and three rebounds, canned a pair of catch-and-shoot triples.
“We can run spread and dribble drive and pitch around guys who can shoot, or we can use our set plays to get the look we want, so it makes our offensive game a lot easier to execute,” said Slusser, who also nabbed six steals, grabbed four rebounds and dished three assists in addition to his 12 points.
Yet, even in spite of that smooth, synergistic tempo East summoned in half-court situations, it was their press and overall go-go style that truly overwhelmed the Red Riders.
Utilizing 1-2-2 and 2-2-1 fullcourt pressure schemes, the Bees flummoxed Weir with a firestorm of swarming arms on the ball and vibrant activity jumping passing lanes off of it. They prodded seven turnovers apiece in each of the first two periods for 14 total in the first half as they took a 38-25 lead into the break.
“We knew their personnel — they penetrate pretty well and are pretty quick as a team — and we wanted to make sure we neutralized their speed and their quickness,” Coach Asterino said. “We had talked about if we
SEE BEES, PAGE 3B
East Fairmont’s Ethan Harvey drives against Weir’s Brodie McUmar during Saturday’s game at East Fairmont High School.
PHOTO BY TAMMY SHRIVER
C ONTINUEDFROMPAGE1B weren’t playing real well in man-to-man, we’d mix in some zones and press work and we did and got on a little bit of a run.”
The press spearheaded a 10-2 run by the Bees to start the second quarter after they led 17-9 after the first period. Aaron Gorman, who had seven points, five steals and three assists off the bench, initiated the spurt with a reacharound poke away that led to a Slusser layup before he finished off his own doubleclutch layup. A Pollock putback and a pick-six steal-layup by Slusser ballooned East’s lead to 27-11 less than three minutes into the frame.
“I think (in the press) it’s really about not holding back — just go to the ball, trap and make plays,” Slusser said.
Weir finally stitched together some tic-tac-toe passing sequences thereafter to spurn the press for transition buckets, but East’s half-court offense couldn’t be contained with Harvey ticking off five straight points and then Rogers feeding Avery Baker for a high-low layup.
At the half, East was 13-of-21 (61.9 percent) from the field and 7-of-11 from the line.
In the third, the Bees were still scorching as they hit eight of their first 12 shots in what would amount to a 20-point quarter. Rogers got the period started with a wing 3 off a kickout pass and then he unfurled back-to-back drives, the first for a layup on a closeout attack and the next for a drive-and-kick assist to Asterino for a corner trey.
With the Bees up 48-32 midway through the third quarter, Slusser delivered back-to-back transition layups with impressive finishes before Harvey stuck another triple off a drive-and-kick assist from Gorman. East hiked the lead up to a whopping 26point margin at 58-32 heading into the fourth.
The sectional victory over Weir on Saturday comes on the heels of a win over regional foe Petersburg last week in which the Bees scored 62 points and had Asterino (14 points), Harvey (11 points), Pollock (11 points) and Rogers (10 points) all score in double figures while Slusser added nine.
“I’m really proud of our kids — I think they’ve battled hard,” Coach Asterino said. “We’ve put together two wins back to back and we’re going to keep working and keep moving ahead.”
The Bees’ next game will be against cross-town foe Fairmont Senior on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at East Fairmont High School.
Email Bradley Heltzel at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @bradheltzTWV.
Tenacity takes Lady Polar Bears to 71-42 win over East Fairmont
FAIRMONT — Marley Washenitz will tell you and Corey Hines will preach it: In girls’ basketball, the most aggressive teams win.
That tenacity has been a hallmark of Hines’ teams throughout his 10-year tenure at Fairmont Senior, and through three games this season, this year’s crop of youthful Lady Polar Bears are starting to discover the sheer dynamism that patented feistiness carries, with it all reaching a peak in Tuesday’s cross-town clash with East Fairmont.
The Lady Polar Bears (3-0) prodded 41 turnovers and grabbed 21 offensive rebounds to power past the Bees 71-42 at the 201st Fairmont Senior High School Field House.
“We knew from the beginning of the season we’d have a young group, but most of us have been playing together since a young age and we’re hard workers,” said FSHS sophomore Laynie Beresford, who had 10 points, five assists, four rebounds and four steals, “so I think we knew very early we could be tough defensively.”
That defense, which toggled between myriad full- and half-court pressure looks, wrecked East Fairmont all night despite the Bees shooting a respectable 40 percent from the floor, including 50 percent in the first half. The Polar Bears ended the night with 24 steals, with sophomore star Marley Washenitz doing the majority of FSHS’s theft as she stuffed the stat sheet with 13 points, 10 steals, seven rebounds and seven assists.
“You got to have good leadership on the floor so you have to have somebody who believes in what you’re trying to teach and Marley does that, she believes. You also have to have good coaches, and Corey Boddy and Ryan Sevier do an excellent job,” said Hines. “We work, we work...and by that happening, that stuff becomes contagious. In years past, we’ve had Courtney Wilfong, Tyra Horton, other players who have believed in being aggressive, and this year, Marley’s really buying into it and also Emily Starn — Emily, she’s in there.
“So it starts with that, and then I’m looking at some of our younger kids and they’re enjoying the way things are going and they enjoy the way we play.”
The spoils of that defensive moxie spread across the entire FSHS lineup on Tuesday, with 11 different Polar Bears scoring in the game and six recording five or more points.
Washenitz and Starn tied for the team-high in scoring with 13 points apiece, followed by 10 points apiece from Beresford and junior Bekah Jenkins. Reagan Blasher added another nine ponts, while Makayla Lilley had five points.
“Us causing turnovers, that definitely gets everybody’s game spiked up more and gets everybody hyped up more about the game,” said Beresford, who was 4-of-6 from the field.
The bevy of turnovers put East Fairmont in an early 10-point hole after the first quarter at 22-12 despite 5-of-9 shooting for the Bees and seven points from EFHS sharpshooter Kierra Bartholow in the frame. An 8-2 run to close the period, in particular, did the Bees in, with Beresford first diming up Blasher for a wing 3 from the high post before she and Keyonna Hilson scored on back-to-back breakaway layups off steals.
Fairmont Senior quickly hiked up the margin into the 15-16-point range in the second quarter, with Lilley plopping in back-to-back buckets, the first of which came on a gorgeous dime by Washenitz in semi-transition.
East Fairmont stayed within shouting distance for most of the second quarter, with the Bees’ marquee performer being Avery Pack off the bench. Pack scored a team-high 13 points to go with seven rebounds, four steals and three blocks, while Bartholow tallied another 10 points for the Bees. But with senior point guard Mackenzie Tennant and junior forward Somer Stover having to initiate EFHS’s press breaker, two of the Bees' offensive linchpins were never afforded opportunities to be play finishers as they scored a combined four points on four shots for the game, with neither player even attempting a shot in the first half.
A clean swipe by Beresford for a runout and-one layup followed by a flashy step through layup by Jenkins gave the Polar Bears a 42-23 lead at the half, with FSHS owning a 27-6 turnover margin.
A pair of 3s by Starn in the opening moments of the third quarter blew the game open as Fairmont Senior doubled up the Bees at 50-25 with five minutes to go in the period.
Fairmont Senior (3-0) will play again Thursday when it travels to rival North Marion (1-0), while East Fairmont (1-2) will play its next game Saturday afternoon at home against Hedgesville.
Email Bradley Heltzel at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @bradheltzTWV.
Bees sting Red Riders in OT
Local Sports Weirton Daily Times Dec 4, 2019
RALPH COX Sports correspondent
WEIRTON — The Weir High girls basketball team had a couple of shots going down the stretch in overtime but couldn’t find the mark, as they fell to East Fairmont, 41-40, in a thriller on the Ron (Fritz) Williams Court inside the Carl Hamill Fieldhouse Tuesday night.
It was the season opener for both teams, and they played the game as if it was tournament time.
The Bees pressured the Red Riders in the first half and went to the locker room with an 18-12 lead. However, Rick Stead’s club got things going in the third quarter, took the lead and didn’t give it up until East Fairmont’s Avery Pack grabbed an offensive rebound and put the ball back up into the basket, tying the game at 36-36 with 29 seconds left in regulation.
The Bees got a hoop off of the overtime tipoff and were never headed in the extra period.
“We didn’t make many adjustments at halftime,” Stead said. “We just talked about tightening things up, make the easy shots and protect the basketball (Weir High had 16 first-half turnovers). The girls played better and stepped up their intensity level in the second half. We had a real nice run in the third quarter (the Red Riders outscored the Bees 19-10 in that third stanza).”
Weir High was down 27-19 at the 4:22 mark of the third quarter when they went on a 12-1 run to go into the final period with a 31-28 lead.
“Pressuring is the style that we want to play,” East Fairmont coach James Beckman said. “We have nine or 10 girls that we can go with. That’s our identity this year. I have eight returning lettermen, four seniors and they have been through games like this before.
“We played before in hostile crowds. I scheduled this season the first three games on the road for a reason. When you go to Charleston, you’re going to be on the road, and we want to be battled tested to start the season. Our conference alone is tough. Everyone knows that, in the Big Ten, you’re battled tested every night. I’m very proud of how they kept their composure throughout the game.”
Weir High senior Olivia Bernola made a layup with 4:15 left in regulation to give the Red Riders a 35-30 lead. The other senior on the team, Sophia Mikula, dropped in a free throw a minute later for Weir High’s biggest lead of the game at 36-30. However, that was the last point the Riders would score in regulation.
The Bees took a 40-36 lead at the 2:53 mark of overtime on two free throws by Pack. Mikula then nailed a clutch 3-pointer with 1:47 left to cut the lead to one point at 40-39.
Mackenzie Tennant made a free throw with 59 seconds left, and Leah Maley sank one at the 41-second mark, but Weir High couldn’t get a couple of shots from close range to fall as time ran out.
“We had a couple of freshmen play in their first varsity game tonight, and this was a physical game,” Stead said. “There was a lot of pushing and shoving, and I’m sure they had nothing like that in middle school. But, overall, I’m proud of the way the kids came back after halftime and kept up the intensity throughout the game. We showed that we can play with one of the better teams in our section.”
Maley, who injured a knee before the season started last year and had to sit out her sophomore year, made her presence known in her return, finishing with a double-double. She led the Red Riders with 13 points and 11 rebounds. She also had a couple of assists and a block. Mikula followed with 11 points and seven rebounds.
Pack was the high scorer for the Bees with 11 points. She was followed closely by Somer Stover with 10 points.
East Fairmont dominated in the reserve game, winning 50-17. Mackenzie Moyer scored 16 points for the Bees, while Casey Yacos, Taylor Haught and Kiara Palavis each scored four points for the Riders.
East Fairmont: Travels to Tucker County on Thursday.
Weir High: Hosts Steubenville on Thursday.
East Fairmont 41, Weir High 40 (OT)
East Fairmont 10-8-10-8-5 — 41
Weir High 9-3-19-5-4 — 40
EAST FAIRMONT (1-0): Tennant 3 1-2 7; Oates 1 0-0 2; Corley 1-2-4 4; Pack 4 3-5 11; Stover 5 0-0 10; Barthalow 0 1-2 1; Casuccio 3 0-0 6. TOTALS: 17, 7-13: 41. REBOUNDS: 19 (Tennant, Stover 4 each). TURNOVERS: 15.
WEIR HIGH (0-1): Mikula 3 4-6 11; Bernola 2 0-0 4; Hoover 0 0-0 0; I. Aperfine 4 0-0 8; S. Aperfine 1 0-0 2; Maley 2 9-15 13; Nutter 1 0-0 2. TOTALS: 13, 13-21: 40. 3-POINT GOALS: Mikula. REBOUNDS: 39 (Maley 11). TURNOVERS: 26.
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