Tigers shock No. 8 Tucker County

HAMBLETON — Donovan Wiles fired off 23 points Wednesday to lead Elkins past Tucker County, 56-49, in the boy’s varsity basketball season opener.

The victory marked the first time the Tigers have defeated the Mountain Lions in Hambleton since 1995.

Tucker County was ranked No. 8 in Class A in this week’s Associated Press high school boys basketball poll.

“We did what we had to do and we came out with the W,” EHS coach Brandon Simmons said. “It’s been a long time coming, since we’ve had a win up there on the hill. People were saying we haven’t won in that gym since 1995. It’s a good step in the right direction for us. Hopefully we can build on this and continue on with the season.”

Aside from Wiles, other Tigers to reach double digits in scoring were Read Schumacher with 12 points and Elliot White with 10 points. Matt Gainer contributed 5 points and Tyler Monk added 4 points to the effort.

Senior guard Wesley Snyder led the Mountain Lions in scoring with 20 points. Corrick Ambrose chipped in 17 points and 8 rebounds, while Alec Cummings, 6 points, Jeff Snyder, 4 points, and Ben Cromer, 2 points, rounded out the scoring. Jeff Snyder led TCHS with 12 rebounds.

“We’re going to regroup,” TCHS coach Jim Ambrose said. “Really, we have two returning varsity players. None of the rest have varsity experience. It showed tonight. We were a step behind. We were a little scared. Corrick (Ambrose) and Wes (Snyder) played pretty well. Those two are the ones with the varsity experience. I was expecting that from them. Now, we’ve got to pick it up. We’ve got to get scoring from the rest of the team.”

Elkins jumped out to a 18-6 lead after the first quarter to gain the momentum. Tucker County outshot the Tigers, 17-16, in the second quarter to make the tally 34-23 at the half. The Mountain Lions continued to rally and stormed the court in the third quarter to outscore EHS, 14-7, and narrow the gap. The Tigers regained their consistency in the fourth quarter and edged TCHS, 15-12, to earn the victory.

Tucker County (0-1) is set to travel to Southern Garrett, Maryland, on Friday for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff.

The Tigers are set to compete in the Morgantown Invitational Tournament this weekend. The team will face Magnolia tonight at 6 p.m., then the team will face Morgantown High School on Saturday at 2:30 p.m.

Both games will be played at Morgantown High School.