The inside-outside offense of the PikeView Panthers was impressive enough on Wednesday night. The defense against River View at the other end turned the game into a blowout.
The Panthers shot 54 percent from the field, generated 22 assists, forced 16 turnovers and out-fought the Raiders 83-60 in the Class AA, Region 3, Section 2 semifinals on the Coach Ralph Ball Court of Princeton Senior High School.
Center Zach Meadows poured in 25 points and grabbed nine rebounds for PikeView (14-8), while guard Jason Weitzel had seven assists, six rebounds and three steals. Tanner Farley nailed three of PikeView's 10 treys, scoring 17 points, and Seth Wood contributed 16 points and three more steals.
Taylor DeHaven had 10 first-quarter points for River View (11-10), and concluded his senior season with 31 points, sinking 10 of his team's 22 field goals, and collecting a game-high 13 rebounds.
The Raiders were made eight of their 12 field-goal tries in the first quarter, and it took a buzzer-beater by Meadows for PikeView to post a 22-21 lead after eight minutes.
Meadows said, “I'll be honest with you, we were shocked. We weren't coming in here over-confident, but then we realized we'd have to play.”
PikeView head coach Lindsey Jones said, “We came out a little flat... They just were doing a better job of executing than us, and we needed to make some adjustments ...on the defensive end. Our offense was OK, but we were giving up way too many baskets.”
Farley said, “We prioritize defense heavily. We want our defense to be our strongest point.”
River View managed just two field goals in the second quarter, missing 13 shots in one stretch, and the Panthers extended their lead to 38-27 at intermission.
Raiders head coach Roger Hale said, “Their size and shooting got the best of us. They're a good team, a very good team. ... I like to press the ball, but they beat our press real easy, so we went back to zone.”
The perimeter started opening up for PikeView once the Raiders packed the paint to counter Meadows.
Meadows said, “We wanted to make sure we had an inside presence, then we could get it to our guards on the outside so they could shoot it up.”
Farley said, “Our big guys do real well, and when they (the opponents) collapse, we can get it out to the other guys to shoot.”
The Panthers opened the second half with an 8-2 spurt in two minutes of game time, forcing a pair of Raiders turnovers and dominating the glass.
Wood said, “We just knew that we had to come out and be more aggressive, and execute everything more efficiently, because we should have been up by a lot more than we were.
“We just had to keep the pressure on them, and keep them making little mistakes, to where they didn't think they had a chance with us.”
The lead expanded to 20 points, 55-35, on Wood's three from the right corner 4 1/2 minutes into the second half.
PikeView's Bradley Flinchum got hot early in the fourth quarter with three straight baskets. River View's Todd Coeburn wowed the crowd with back-to-back 3-pointers a few minutes later, but the outcome had essentially been decided by then. Substitutes finished out the game.
Jones said, “It's postseason. You want to get the win, and when you get the win, you want to get them (the starters) out of there. ...It's all about winning and advancing, right now.”
River View guard Jordan Wilson played an energetic game from one baseline to the other, enabling his teammates on offense and pestering the Panthers as a defender. He wound up with eight points, three rebounds and a steal.
Hale said PikeView is “a well-coached team, and very disciplined. They played really well and shot the ball excellent.”
He said about his first year with the Raiders, “The public, the kids, the parents have really bought into our system. I'm very pleased with it. Very pleased.”
Hale said the seniors this year “led by example. I've said that all year long. They've come in and showed the younger boys (and) set the standard high. I'm pleased with them.”
PikeView plays defending state champion Bluefield for the sectional title at 7 p.m. Friday at Princeton. Both the Panthers and the Beavers will advance to next week’s regional co-finals; Friday’s winner will host a game while the loser must go on the road to face the champion of Section 1.
Wyoming East and Westside meet on Friday in Beckley to determine that sectional crown.
— Contact Tom Bone at firstname.lastname@example.org
At Coach Ralph Ball Court
RIVER VIEW (11-10)
Todd Coeburn 2 0-0 6, Joseph McClanahan 3 0-0 6, Tyree Baker 2 0-0 4, Taylor Dehaven 10 8-11 31, Jordan Wilson 3 2-2 8, Cameron Roberts 1 0-0 2, Jimmy Baker 1 -0-0 3. Totals 22 10-13 60.
Austin Hazelwod 1 0-0 3, Seth Wood 7 1-2 16, Bradley Flinchum 3 0-2 6, Tanner Farley 7 0-0 17, Hunter Hill 2 0-0 6, Jason Weitzel 3 1-2 8, Tyler Cecil 1 0-0 2, Zach Meadows 8 7-8 25. Totals 32 9-14 83.
River View..................21 6 15 18 — 60
PikeView....................22 16 27 18 — 83
3-point goals: RV 6 (Coeburn 2, Dehaven 3, Baker 1); PV 10 (Hazelwood 1, Wood 1, Farley 3, Hill 2, Weitzel 1, Meadows 2). Fouled out: none. Total fouls: RV 10, PV 11. Technical fouls: none.�