PARKERSBURG - Samantha Parks knocked down three clutch foul shots to force overtime Thursday night at the Rod Oldham Athletic Center for visiting Morgantown, but the Mohigans never got going in the extra session as Parkersburg South improved to 15-0 following a 61-53 triumph.
The defending Class AAA state champion Patriots were battling the No. 9 Mohigans in a Class 5A Ohio Valley Athletic Conference semifinal tournament game as a one versus four seed.
Parkersburg South, which will take on University at 3 p.m. Saturday at Ohio University-Eastern in the title affair, only made one bucket in overtime. That basket was a big one as Taryn McCutcheon picked Mohigan point guard Olivia Seggie for an easy steal and lay-in with 2:26 remaining for a 54-48 cushion. Parks hit a 3-pointer with 1:04 to go, which cut the deficit to 56-53, but the visitors never got any closer.
Photo by Jeff Baughan
Parkersburg South's Taryn McCutcheon, left, goes for a layup past Morgantown's Rachel Laskody as the Patriots' Keya Bartlett looks on Thursday during their OVAC semifinal game. South defeated Morgantown, 61-53, in overtime. Additional photos of this event can be found at CU.newsandsentinel.com
Prior to McCutcheon's steal, Keya Bartlett drained four free throws. The first pair came seven seconds into overtime and gave PSHS the lead for good at 50-48. The next two followed 65 seconds later. Bartlett, who scored 16 points while McCutcheon had a game-high 23, surpassed the 1,000 point plateau at the foul line, becoming only the second Patriot junior to do so.
After Parks' 3-ball in the extra session, McCutcheon canned four consecutive charity stripe freebies while Katelyn Byrd added one for the final margin of victory.
Things looked pretty good for the hosts on senior night when Mykalyn Fallon swished in a 21-foot bomb when she was left all alone for a 39-34 Patriot advantage with 6:46 left in regulation. However, triples by Lydia Adrian and Brie Giuliani kept the Mohigans (11-7) within striking distance.
Seggie's driving lay-in with 1:32 to play answered an inside deuce by Patriot Anna Hayton, who was in foul trouble most of the night, and brought the Mohigans within one at 46-45. Although McCutcheon pushed the lead to three with two foul shots 14 ticks later, Morgantown couldn't get anything to fall at the other end.
Still leading by three, both McCutcheon and Hayton missed the front end of a 1-and-1 down the stretch and Morgantown had one last chance with the ball under its own basket with 2.4 seconds showing on the scoreboard. That's when Parks got the inbounds pass and was fouled by Bartlett on a 3-point attempt.
The officials put 0.3 back on the clock and the junior calmly canned each of her attempts. The first spun around the rim and fell through. After the second nearly swished in, Parks' third one to force overtime hit the front of the rim and had just enough on it.
Morgantown's Sydney Holloway, who had a game-high 16 rebounds, tallied eight of her team-high 17 points in the first quarter, but the hosts led 17-11 after McCutcheon sliced into the lane and made a circus-scooping lay-in.
Katie Ferrebee hit consecutive trifectas late in the second quarter to help the Mohigans, who play in Saturday's consolation game at Indian Creek, to a 26-25 halftime advantage.
PSHS, which held the Mohigans to less than 30 percent from the field, hit 27 of 36 foul shots. Bartlett went 13 of 14 while McCutcheon was 8 of 9.
Parks tallied eight points, Seggie had a game-high seven assists and Carlie Wilson led the Patriots with eight rebounds.
Although the Patriots don't have an active 12th-grader, injured senior Kayleigh Rexroad was honored along with the Parkersburg South swim team and the ROTC senior members.