MARIETTA -Parkersburg South's girls basketball team started out the season 0-3, including a loss to a small Ohio school in Fort Frye and a 20-point blowout inflicted by regional rival Wheeling Park.
But the Patriots didn't panic.
Coach Scott Stephens went into the season knowing this was a young team and one with talent. Plus, its work ethic was phenomenal.
Stephens figured it was only a matter of time before the Patriots started winning.
Win No. 1 came against crosstown rival Parkersburg High, a 29-point blowout of the Big Reds.
Since then, the Patriots have been on a roll. One that continued on Saturday as South defeated Warren Local, 63-44, at the Ohio River Classic conducted at Marietta College.
The Patriots, for the first time this season, have a winning record at 4-3. They've won four straight, beating PHS, Shadyside, Brooke and Warren to attain that mark.
South jumped on Warren early on Saturday, taking a 21-10 first-quarter lead and never looking back. The Patriots led 34-18 at halftime and while Warren cut the deficit in the third quarter, South put the game away in convincing fashion over the final eight minutes.
Leading the way for the Patriots was freshman sensation Taryn McCutcheon, who scored a game-high 17 points and also dished out eight assists.
Stephens makes no bones about just how good McCutcheon is and will be.
"We watched her play at Blennerhassett and couldn't wait until she got here,'' Stephens said. "She will set records before she leaves Parkersburg South.''
Sophomore Keya Bartlett added 14 for the Patriots while junior Kayleigh Rexroad added 11.
When Warren was rallying in the third quarter, South needed someone to step up and put out the fire. Bartlett threw water on the situation, banging home three treys and putting the Patriots in a commanding position.
Stephens was pleased with the win, praising both the Warren coaching staff led by Amy Colgrove and the Warriors' talent.
"Emma Ryan is as good a post player as I have seen play,'' Stephens said of the Warren senior, who led the Warriors with 12 points. Sophomore sharpshooter Victoria Buzzard contributed 11 for the Warriors.
South is off until next Saturday, when the Patriots travel to Ohio Valley Athletic Conference and Two Rivers Athletic Conference rival John Marshall. Warren, meanwhile, will travel to Marietta to take on Xavier-bound Erica Dawson and the Tigers in a Washington County showdown on Wednesday night.