Battle-tested Tigers set for postseason

Elkins coach John Lawson wasn’t sure how is team would react after playing four games in four days earlier this month.

Because of postponements due to the weather, the Tigers played a home game, followed by three straight on the road.

“It made us tougher,” Lawson said. “I really think we grew as a team during that stretch.”

After losing the first three games of the gauntlet, Elkins played one of its better games of the season with an impressive 65-54 win at Bridgeport.

The Tigers then concluded regular-season play with another road victory at Philip Barbour last week.

Lawson hopes the momentum gained will continue in the postseason, which begins at 7 p.m. today at home against Hampshire for a Class AAA, Region II, Section 2 matchup.

“I’ve been proud of how the kids have responded in my first year as coach,” Lawson said. “They have learned on the go and tried to make themselves better.”

The Tigers enter today’s contest with a 13-8 mark, while the Trojans are 13-9.

Elkins defeated Hampshire, 64-58, in the season opener for both teams back on Dec. 4.

“They play a lot like us,” Lawson said. “They do a great job of defending, so it should be an interesting game.”

Elkins is led in scoring by junior forward Logan Phillips and junior guard Colby Gainer. Junior guard Tyler Shreve, and seniors L.J. Lawrence and Brandon Roth round out the starting lineup.

Sophomore guard Braden Hammond provides a spark off the bench with his three-point shooting.

Sophomore Travis Clower and senior David Smith lead the Trojans.

Today’s winner will face either Buckhannon-Upshur or Lewis County at 7 p.m. Friday at the site of the highest remaining seed.

The Bucs will visit the Minutemen at 7 p.m. today.

In other action today, Tucker County will face South Harrison at 6 p.m. at Alderson-Broaddus College in a Class A, Region II, Section 1 play, while Tygarts Valley will battle Notre Dame at 7:30 p.m.

The title game is set for 7 p.m. on Friday.