Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local Sports

December 15, 2013

Richlands falls in Tip-Off Classic finals

BRISTOL, Va. — For the first time since 1978 the Lebanon girls have won a championship. The Pioneers played an amazing game in a 49-34 win over Richlands to claim the title in the Virginia Tip-Off Tournament at the Bearcat Den.

“This is so exciting,” Lebanon guard Hannah Cox said. “These girls have put in a lot of hard work, I think we deserve this.”

Lebanon coach Rex Parker came out with a great game plan. The Pioneers played a 1-3 zone defense and put a chaser on Richlands standout Brittany Allen who had dominated the first two games the Blues had played. Lebanon’s Elizabeth Johnson was the chaser and she slowed Allen and when she was able to get by her, someone was waiting to help.

“I’m so proud of E.J. (Johnson), said Cox. “We came in and knew Allen would go hard on us and drive to the bucket. I told E.J. to play hard, play up on her and I think she got her frustrated.”

Allen was held to only two points through the first three quarters of the game.

“Lebanon just did a good job, they kind of took Brittany out of the game with the box-and-one on her,” Richlands coach Dennis Palmer said. “Our other girls didn’t step up and get it done, but we haven’t worked on that in practice and that’s on me, that’s my fault. I didn’t prepare them to play against that tonight.”

   The Blue Tornado had only 13 points at halftime and were trailing by 10 points. The Lebanon defense unbelievably held them scoreless in the third quarter.

Allen got on track and scored 13 points in the fourth quarter before fouling out of the contest. She finished with 15 points.

“This was big, the girls did a great job on Allen,” Parker said. “We knew Richlands was quick and we were able to contain them from driving to the bucket. They didn’t shoot well from outside.”

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