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Regional competition up next for ‘Cats

By Staff | Mar 11, 2015

After inclement winter weather stopped and started the Region I, Section II West Virginia boys basketball tournament a time or two last week, Paden City’s Wildcats were finally able to play on Saturday. Originally scheduled on March 4 at Doddridge County, high creek waters and flooding forced the postponement of the games to Friday, March 6, and then finally, to Saturday, March 7.

At Doddridge, the Section II semi-finals finally got underway, with the Paden City Wildcats facing off against Morgantown Trinity Christian.

Neck-and-neck throughout the game, the Wildcats put together a 20-point second period while holding the Warriors to only 11 to take a determined lead in the contest at the half, 35-25. Though Trinity outscored the Green and White in both the third and fourth periods, Paden City held on just enough to edge out the Morgantown team for the win, 60-56.

Wildcat senior Kennedy Cain, stepped up for the ‘Cats in the Trinity game, scoring a game high 18 points. Cain also brought down seven rebounds and had six assists. Fellow senior Zach Heasley scored 16 points and totaled four rebounds, one block, two steals, and two assists. Sophomore Luke Cooper added 14 points and had nine rebounds, two blocks, a steal, and three assists in the win. Senior Craig Allen chipped in seven points, one rebound, and an assist; Hayden Hizer scored five points, had two rebounds, and six assists; and Brandon Cross had five rebounds, two steals and one assist.

The exciting win moved the Wildcats into the championship game against top seeded St. Marys on Monday night for the Section II title and automatically put them into Regional competition.

On Monday night at Doddridge the ‘Cats went after the Section II title at full tilt, making good on the majority of their shots and tightening up their defense in order to take the win as well as the Sectional title from St. Marys, 69-46 in yet another exhilarating game.

Paden City senior, shot maker Kennedy Cain, got things started off on the right foot, opening the game a long three pointer which was quickly answered by St. Marys. However, fellow seniors, Craig Allen and Zach Heasley each hit baskets for two apiece in the opening minutes to give the ‘Cats a nice lead to begin with. At the end of the first, the Green led by a 19-9 margin, which turned into a 34-20 lead at the half.

In the second Heasley and Cain kept the barrage of points coming for Paden City as the determined team kept their goal of the win in mind with a 43-24 lead after three.

Steady, confident play and a great defensive effort paid off for the ‘Cats as they took the well-earned win, and the Sectional championship, 69-46.

Cain and Heasley each totaled 21 points apiece in the win while Luke Cooper chipped in 15. Hizer scored six and Logan Carroll, Allen and Aaron Heasley each scored two points apiece.

With the win, Paden City’s record now stands at 12-12 on the season. The Green and White will now host the defending Class-A Champions, the Wheeling Central Maroon Knights, on Thursday in Paden City at Bob Burton Gymnasium at 7 p.m.

The winner of this game will automatically earn a trip to the West Virginia state tournament. The winners of this game and a simultaneous matchup of Magnolia and St. Marys will be co-regional champions.

Fans of the game will need to get to Paden City early on Thursday for what is sure to be one of the best high school games of the season when the ‘Cats and Knights tangle.

Tickets for the game will be pre-sold at PCHS from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Wednesday and until noon Thursday, $7 for adults and $5 for students. All tickets at the gate will be $7 each.