Wildcats take 3rd straight championship
It was a good weekend for high school basketball and no place had more excitement here in the beginning of the season than Paden City High School where the Wildcats and Bob Burton Gymnasium hosted the annual “Bob and Sharon Burton Christmas Classic” Basketball Tournament.
Dec. 12 saw the tournament kick off with game one between the Tyler Consolidated Knights and Clay-Battelle Cee-Bee’s. The Knights got off to a slow start, but were able to hold on for the win, 45-42 in the slow paced contest.
A busy and productive fourth quarter, outscoring the Cee-Bee’s 16-8 eventually gave the Silver their first win of the season.
Sophomore Jace Reed led the way for the Knights in the game, totaling 19 points, bringing down three rebounds, offering three assists and four steals. Tyler Anderson added eight points, had five rebounds; Blake Carpenter, six points, two rebounds; Trent Smith, five points, 10 rebounds, two blocks and an assist; Austin Thompson, four points, five rebounds, three steals; Dylan Roberts, three points, seven rebounds, three assists, four steals; Josh Smith, three rebounds; Jonathan Lancaster, one rebound, one steal; and Daron Weekley contributed one rebound.
Game two of the tournament saw a much anticipated match-up between the home town Wildcats and cross county rivals, the Valley Lumberjacks.
Paden City took the win, 61-48 after outdistancing the Jacks by a long shot, 25-8 in the first period of play. The ‘Cats had three players with double/doubles in the game.
Senior Zach Heasley was on his game for the Green and White, putting up 25 points on the scoreboard and pulling down 11 rebounds in the win. He also had three assists and two steals. Kennedy Cain added 16 points to Wildcat side of the scoreboard, brought down 10 rebounds, had five assists and two steals; Luke Cooper, 14 points, 10 rebounds; and Hayden Hizer scored four, and had five assists.
In the consolation game on Saturday, the Lumberjacks handed the loss to Clay-Battelle, 71-45 to place third overall in the tournament.
In the championship game of the tournament in front of a large crowd, both the Wildcats and Knights put on quite a physical show of force against each other in the contest, with Paden City eventually coming out on top over Tyler Consolidated, 81-60. The championship win of the Bob and Sharon Burton Christmas Classic Basketball Tournament was the third straight in a row for the ‘Cats.
“I’m extremely proud of our guys,” said Paden City head coach, Fred King. “A win at home in front of our fans, it just doesn’t get better than this.”
Standouts on both teams, Paden City senior Kennedy Cain and Consolidated sophomore Jace Reed started making noise early in the game, with both shooting the long ball and following up for the rebound and put back time and time again.
The ‘Cats jumped out to the 19-12 lead in the first period and played solid, holding their lead throughout the rest of the game to win by 21 points by the end, 81-60.
Wildcat Kennedy Cain topped the chart of all scorers in the game with 28 points overall and seven rebounds. He also had four assist and three steals. Heasley chipped in 19 points, brought down eight rebounds and had four assists; Cooper, 16 points, two steals; Craig Allen, five points; Hizer, four points; Deven Price, four points; and Brandon Cross, four points.
Reed was the leading scorer for the Silver, totaling 17 points. He also had two rebounds and four assists. Sophomore Tyler Anderson put up 14 points and brought down eight rebounds, had two assists and two steals; Roberts scored nine points, had one rebound and one steal; Weekley, eight points, one rebound, one steal; Smith, seven points, six rebounds; Peck, three points, one rebound; Thompson, two points, two rebounds, one assist, one steal; Carpenter, three rebounds, one assist, one steal; Richmond, one rebound; and Smith was credited with two assists, two blocks.
Plaques were handed out to the winners by the tournaments’ name sake, coach Bob Burton himself. Members of the All-Tournament team selected were: Paden City – Cain, Heasley and Cooper; Tyler Consolidated – Reed, Smith; Valley – Tucker Cain and Trey Streets; and Clay-Battelle – Josh Lemley.
On Dec. 9 the Silver Knights traveled to Pine Grove to take on Valley in their first game of the season, but left with the loss, 71-53.
The Silver Knights will see action again on Dec. 18 when they host Wirt County at home. The team will travel to Trinity on Dec. 20 for a 2 p.m. game.
Paden City will travel to Wheeling Central on Dec. 18 to take on the Maroon Knights and on Dec. 26, the team will play their second game with Valley, at Pine Grove.