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Pendleton falls short in title game

CHARLESTON — A fourth-quarter surge lifted top-seed Man to a 43-36 win over No. 3 Pendleton County Saturday in the Class A championship game at the Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center.

The Wildcats trailed 29-26 after three quarters but took a 36-32 lead with 3:05 left in regulation after two free throws from Josh Alt.

However, the Hillbillies (16-2) closed the game on an 11-0 run to secure their first title in school history.

“We fell a little short,” Pendleton County coach Ryan Lambert said. “We made a few mistakes and it cost us.

“We controlled the pace for (most of the game). But I give Man credit, they made the plays and we did not.”

The Wildcats, also seeking their first championship, led 11-6 after one quarter and 19-18 at the break.

Austin Ball had 20 points and Jackson Tackett 11 for the Hillbillies.

Junior Tanner Townsend had 13 points to lead Pendleton County, which entered the game winners of 40 straight contests. Bailey Thompson chipped in eight points, 11 rebounds and three steals, while Alt tallied eight points.

The Wildcats finished the season 17-1. Seniors included Thompson, Alt, Isaiah Gardiner, Taylor Wimer, Ryan Mitchell and Dalton Dunkle.

“I’m extremely proud of what these kids have accomplished the last two seasons,” Lambert said. “I think most people in the state thought this was going to be a 20 or 30 point (win for Man).”

Pendleton County (17-1)

Tanner Townsend 5 0-0 13, Bailey Thompson 3 2-4 8, Isaiah Gardiner 2 1-1 5, Taylor Wimer 1 0-0 2, Josh Alt 3 2-4 8, Cole Day 0 0-0 0. Totals14 5-9 36

Man (16-2)

Peyton Adams 0 6-8 6, Austin Ball 10 0-0 20, Caleb Blevins 2 0-0 4, Jackson Tackett 4 3-5 11, Ryan Cozart 1 0-0 2, Jeremiah Harless 0 0-0 0. Totals 17 9-13 43

Pendleton County 11 8 7 10 — 36

Man 6 12 11 14 — 43

3-point goals: PC 3 (Townsend 3)

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