CHAPMANVILLE Sooner or later, it was going to happen, but the Chapmanville Lady Tigers suffered its first loss of the season Tuesday night dropping a 55-49 setback to sectional rival Mingo Central at Danny Godby Gymnasium.
The Class AA No. 6 Lady Miners (5-0) jumped out to a 20-9 lead over the co-No. 7 Lady Tigers (4-1) and held off a late rally to remain unbeaten on the year.
Chapmanville coach Kristina Gore, whose Lady Tigers had won their first four games by an average of nearly 27 points, had a bad feeling about Tuesday’s matchup with Mingo Central following Monday’s practice.
“Extremely disappointed with our play tonight and lack of focus,” Gore said. “We did not have a good day of preparation on Monday. The old adage is true, the way you practice is how you’ll play.”
Chapmanville fell behind by double digits early, but fought back to within five points, 26-21, at halftime.
Chapmanville made a run at Mingo Central in the third quarter, but the Lady Miners outscored the Lady Tigers down the stretch and held a 43-34 after three quarters of play.
“Defensively, when we executed by getting pressure on the ball, we were able to make a couple of good runs at them and early in the third got the lead back,” Gore said. “We were very nonchalant with basketball, especially late in the game.”
Addie Smith led Mingo Central with 24 points while Dalaney Grimmett finished with 17 points.
“For whatever reason, we laid back, stopped pressuring Smith and allowed her to survey the court and throw it where she wanted to,” Gore said. “Kudos to her, she’s a great player and saw the floor really well tonight.”
Smith made eight field goals, including all six Mingo Central 3-pointers, and was 2 of 3 from the free throw line.
“She gets her shot off as quick as anyone I’ve seen, boy or girl,” Gore said. “If you aren’t in position to come out and contest off the screens they set, she’ll make you pay, and she did tonight.”
Alaira Evans led Chapmanville with a game-high 29 points. Daizi Farley added nine points for the Lady Tigers.
Mingo Central will host Westside Friday night while Chapmanville takes on Class A No. 7 Tug Valley in the Rogers Oil Tournament at Summers County High School Friday afternoon at 5:30 p.m.
“One loss does not define your season, unless you let it,” Gore said. “We’ll find out now what kind of team we have. I’m looking forward to getting back in the gym and seeing if we can’t find a way to regroup, refocus, stay together and get this train back on the tracks.”
Chapmanville will face either Class AA No. 5 Summers County or Braxton County on Saturday.
Mingo Central 55, Chapmanville 49
Mingo Central (5-0)
Davis 4 0-0 8, Adkins 0 0-1 0, Grimmett 7 3-5 17, Curry 0 0-3 0, Smith 8 2-3 24, Hall 3 0-0 6.
Totals: 22 5-12 55.
Mahon 2 0-0 4, Evans 11 4-4 29, Farley 3 1-2 9, Fleming 1 0-0 3, Thompson 2 0-0 4.
Totals: 19 5-6 49.
Mingo Central 20 6 17 12- 55
Chapmanville 9 12 13 15- 49
3-point field goals- Mingo Central 6 (Smith 6), Chapmanville 6 (Evans 3, Farley 2, Fleming).