Tucker, Tygarts Valley to battle for title

PHILIPPI – Tucker County and Tygarts Valley know they’ll still be playing next week win or lose in today’s Class A, Region II, Section 1 title game at Rex Pyles Arena.

But the question is where, as the victor gets to host a regional final with a berth in the state tournament on the line.

“It’s always important to get that home game,” Lady Mountain Lion coach Jim Ambrose said. “We want to be playing in front of our crowd with so much on the line.”

Today’s winner will entertain the section 2 runner-up on Thursday, while the loser will travel to the sectional winner.

“We have a great opportunity in front of us,” Lady Bulldog coach Mike DiPasquale said. “Of course we’re happy to still be playing next week, but we also want to go out and win a sectional championship.”

To achieve that goal, DiPasquale’s squad must find a way to defeat a Mountain Lion squad that defeated them in both regular-season meetings by an average of 20 points.

The Lady Bulldogs (16-6) were able to do so Wednesday night against a Notre Dame squad that also swept them this year, taking a 58-43 victory.

“We’re playing well right now,” said DiPasquale, whose team has won four straight games. “I’ve been very pleased with our effort, especially our rebounding and unselfish play on offense.”

Ambrose has directed Tucker County to a 17-5 record in his first season at the helm. The Lady Mountain Lions rolled past Union 93-25 in their sectional opener.

“We’re shooting the ball very well,” Ambrose said. “We’ll need to continue to do that against Tygarts Valley, along with playing tough defense.”

Three All-Potomac Valley Conference players will be on display in today’s contest – Tucker County’s Stephanie Betler and Amber Evans, and Tygarts Valley’s Shanda Howell.

Betler averages 14.3 points and 3.8 assists, Evans 14 points and 2.7 assists and Howell 19.6 points.

Today’s game will begin at 7 p.m.