Mingo Central beats Canadian team in Florida

By Kyle Lovern Civitas News Service

December 31, 2013

The Mingo Central High School boys’ basketball team notched its first win of the season.

But they had to travel to Florida to get it as they defeated Balfour Collegiate of Canada 47-44 in the first round of the Disney World Classic in Orlando, Fla., last Friday.

Senior Alex Lee led the Miners with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Dalton Hatfield chipped in 10 for Coach Brad Napier’s team.

Chase Hatfield and Stevie Hammond each scored five points, while Mallie May dished out six assists and had five rebounds. Hammond also handed out five assists.

Adam Dillon added four points and Deonte Joplin chipped in with two.

“Our defense is getting better,” said Napier, a Harts native and longtime Logan High School assistant coach. “They were big with two post players at 6-7 and 6-6.”

One of their big men accounted for 25 of the Canadian team’s 44 points.

Balfour Collegiate, a Canadian public school with an enrollment of 900 students, is located in Regina, Saskatchewan.

* The Miners lost in the consolation game on Monday morning in the Disney World Classic played in Florida to a team from New Jersey.

On Saturday afternoon, MC lost a 76-73 heartbreaker in the semifinals of their division to Owen J. Roberts High School out of Pennsylvania.

“This was the best game we’ve played all year,” Coach Napier said. “It was a good team effort. We just didn’t get the breaks at the end of the game.”

Mingo Central had a balanced scoring attack in the game led by Alex Lee with 18 points. Chase Hatfield scored 17, while Mallie May had 11, Dalton Hatfield 10 and Julius Hatcher nine. Adam Dillon and Stevie Hammond added four points apiece.

Mingo Central fell 59-46 in the third place game to Fairlawn, N.J., on Monday morning in a game that started at 7:30 a.m.

Napier said his team did not get out to a good start.

“We missed some layups and made a lot of mistakes,” he said.

MCHS had 23 turnovers in the contest.

“Dalton (Hatfield) is starting to play how we expected him to this year,” Napier said of the shooting guard.

Hatfield scored 15 points to lead the Miners and was the only player in double figures.

Lee and Hammond each scored eight points each. May and Dillon added six each for Mingo.

“We’re a young team and we are playing like it so far this season,” Napier said. “We have been up and down, but we’ll work to get better.”

Mingo Central is now 1-5 on the season and head home to West Virginia.

Things don’t get any easier for the Miners as they travel to Poca on Friday night. They lost to the Dots earlier this season at home. Poca is a top 10 ranked Class AA team.

Mingo Central, a member of the Cardinal Conference, plays in the same Class AA sectional with Chapmanville and other schools Tolsia, Wayne and Scott.