Winchester- How an interstate highway changed the face of one small town Facebook – a growing marketplace for local entrepreneurs When kids know best Giving some love to those dog days Junior Fair BBQ again a big success Beulah B James Senior Profile: Josie Myers Lady Indians place second at Ohio Classic in Hillsboro MVCA dominates Greyhounds in 45-0 triumph For Lady Devils, SHAC streak goes to 55 matches 9/11: Sixteen years later Gertrude Gibson Defender Bowl coming Sept. 16 Joyce A Walker Virginia R Young Senior Profile: Abby Campton West Union hosts 2017 Dragon Run New gridiron history begins for Peebles Trout, fire, and blueberry fields forever Senior Profile: Baylee Justice Lady Devils win SHAC thriller at Eastern Brown From Blue Creek to the Beaneaters Tough loss for Greyhounds in season opener Turning tragedy into hope What we learn from failure Absolutely had to get the wrinkles out Frances S Kidder Leo Trotter 41st Bentonville Festival set to begin Sept. 8 Winchester celebrates its history during three-day street fair Cruisefest returning to streets of Peebles Blue Creek- a community in transition honors its history and heritage Cuteness Galore – Winchester Homecoming Festival Baby Show Ronnie L Day Cast your vote for the Adams County Fairgrounds Nelson E Atkinson Ryan L Colvin Richard Tackett William L Tadlock Penny Pollard Wendell Beasley West Union soccer drops pair at Mason County Lady Indians go down in straight sets Senior Profile: Michael Gill Senior Profile: Katie Sandlin Royals dominate in big win over North Adams Dragons continue County Cup domination Archaeology Day returns to Serpent Mound Hourglass Quilt Square is back up again Manchester family hosts International Guests History, farming, and family- the bedrock of Cherry Fork’s community Bus drivers, emergency responders prepare for coming school year Working up a real good sweat What’s behind the motive? Rondal R Bailey Jr Thelma J Yates She’s all grown up now Scott A Yeager Soccer talent on display at 2017 SHAC preview Baseball community mourns the loss of Gene Bennett Winchester Homecoming Festival is Aug 25-27 Eleanor P Tumbleson Felicity man killed in Ohio River boating accident WUHS golfers take Portsmouth Invitational It was pretty cold that day Volleyball kicks off with SHAC Preview Night Young awarded Women’s Western Golf Foundation Scholarship One Mistake Senator Portman visits GE Test Facility in Peebles Adams County school districts facing some major challenges for the coming year Family, friends, and roots: the ties that bind residents of one Adams County village What is your strength? Just the chance to take a look back Ronnie L Wolford Dale J Marshall Herbert Purvis Great American Solar Eclipse coming Aug. 21 BREAKING NEWS: West Union wins fifth consecutive County Cup Wallace B Boden John L Fletcher Lady Indians golfers learning the links North Adams, West Union golfers open 2017 seasons This Labor Day, ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ Blanton announces candicacy for Court of Appeals Local student attends Congress of Future Medical Leaders MHS welcomes new principal Made in America When it feels like you’re spinning plates Bonfires and “building” a farm Lady Devils looking to take that next step 50 years of Bengal memories Ag Society delivers donation to Dragonfly Foundation Young Memorial Scholarship awarded to a pair of local seniors ‘Musical passion is in his blood’ Naylor named NAHS Principal Boldman retiring after 17 years as Homeless Shelter director Manchester concludes another River Days celebration Drug Treatment vs. Prison James R Brown Bobby Lawler Jr

Good year for Lady Dragons ends with sectional finals loss to Lynchburg

Though the final record and the final statistics may not reflect it to the casual basketball fan, it certainly was a successful season for head coach Jason Claytor and his West Union Lady Dragons varsity girls squad. First off, the Lady Dragons won 8 games in the season, the highest total for the program since the 2002-03 season, when that Lady Dragons team won 9. Also, the West Union girls won their first tournament game since the 2007-08 season when they topped Northwest 48-38 on Feb. 10.

“There’s been more positives for our high school progam this year than there has the last couple,” said Claytor. “We’re going in that right direction and building up from where we started. We did a lot of things this year that we weren’t capable of doing in years past.”

That first tourney win in eight years earned the Lady Dragons a trip to the Division III sectional championship game on Feb. 13 at Valley High School, where they matched up with the number-two ranked in the state Lynchburg-Clay Lady Mustangs. That sounds like overwhelming odds and again the casual fan might just look at the final score of 64-39 in Lynchburg’s favor and think it was the expected blowout. Think again.

The Lady Dragons gave their highly favored opponent all they wanted on Saturday, leading through most of the first quarter before the Lady Mustangs pulled away and earned their trip to the district tournament.

“I thought we all really battled today,” said Coach Claytor. “We made some mistakes that ended up costing us but we battled the whole game and gave them all they wanted for a quarter and a half. Very few teams pushed them like that this year.”

Anyone who may have arrived at Valley High School a few minutes late on Saturday may have been in for a shock when they entered the gym and looked up at the overhead scoreboard. On the strength of three-pointers by Alexa Pennington and McKenzie Kirker, the Lady Dragons led the number two team in the state 10-4 more than halfway through the first quarter. The rusty Lady Mustangs, who had been off for a long period of time since completing their regular season, regained their composure with the aid of a McKayla Binkley trey to to battle back to within 12-11, but a bucket by senior Mikayla Akers proceeded another Lynchburg three that tied the game at 14, to the surprise of many, after the end of the initial eight minutes.

Lynchburg took its first lead of the game with five straight to begin the second frame, but West Union answered with a Shannon Runyan three-pointer. A later basket by Pennington and Kristen Grooms free throw kept the Lady Dragons within striking distance, but the explosive Lady Mustangs scored the final 12 points of the first half to open up a 37-20 advantage and seal the fate of their Adams County opponent.

The Lady Mustangs won the second half by a score of 27-19 as they improved to 22-1 on the year and moved on to district tournament play.

In the season-ending loss, the Lady Dragons were led by 14 points from Alexa Pennington, ending a fine freshman season for her. The loss also meant the end of the careers of three seniors, Kristen Grooms, Mikayla Akers, and Hannah Riddle, who combined for 8 points in their final outing.

“Kendall Gallowitz played excellent today, huge for us early,” added Coach Claytor. “Alexa played another stellar game for us-14 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 blocks.”

“We say goodbye to three fantastic seniors, who have given so much to our program, and we will certainly miss them.”

The Lady Mustangs put five players in double figures, led by 16 points from McKayla Binkley. sister Hannah Binkley and Ali Little added 11, with Peyton Scott and Vanessa Thiel getting 10 apiece.

WUHS 14 6 7 12 —39

LCHS 14 23 15 12 —64

WUHS (39): Runyan 2 0-0 6, Baldwin 1 1-2 4, Kirker 1 0-0 3, Akers 1 2-2 4, Riddle 1 0-0 3, Grooms 0 1-4 1, Gallowitz 2 0-0 4, Pennington 6 0-1 14, Team 14 4-9 39.

LCHS (64): Roush 1 2-2 4, Little 4 3-4 11, Scott 4 2-3 10, Thiel 3 4-8 10, Wills 1 0-0 2, H. Binkley 4 2-3 11, M. Binkley 5 4-4 16, Team 22 17-24 64.

Three-Point Goals:

WUHS- Runyan 2, Baldwin 1, Kirker 1, Riddle 1, Pennington 2

LCHS- H. Binkley 1, M. Binkley 2

In her final high school game, West Union senior Hannah Riddle (4) drilled this long three-point shot in the fourth quarter of the sectional final game with Lynchburg.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_WUHSgirls1.jpgIn her final high school game, West Union senior Hannah Riddle (4) drilled this long three-point shot in the fourth quarter of the sectional final game with Lynchburg. Mark Carpenter | People’s Defender

Lady Dragons’ senior Kristen Grooms is surrounded on the baseline by a trio of Lynchburg defenders in action from last Saturday’s sectional final game at Valley High School.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/web1_WUHSgirls2.jpgLady Dragons’ senior Kristen Grooms is surrounded on the baseline by a trio of Lynchburg defenders in action from last Saturday’s sectional final game at Valley High School. Mark Carpenter | People’s Defender
West Union finishes at 8-16

By Mark Carpenter

mcarpenter@civitasmedia.com

Reach Mark Carpenter at 937-544-2391 or on Twitter @adamscopsorts, Instagram-defendersports15.

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