CHAPMANVILLE — The Chapmanville Regional High School girls’ basketball team may have a golden opportunity this season.
With the addition of prolific scorer and 3-point shooter Lexi Hines, and with many returning starters and veterans from last year’s 14-6 season coming back, the Lady Tigers are looking toward Charleston.
It’s been five years since the Lady Tigers last played in the state tournament but this could be Chapmanville’s latest and greatest hope.
Chapmanville’s season last year ended on a sour note as the Lady Tigers were upset 43-30 by Scott in the Class AA sectional tournament despite getting the number one seed.
With Hines, a 5-foot-10 junior guard/forward, coming into the Lady Tiger fold from rival Logan High School and returning players NeNe Osborne (5-4 senior), Lexi Martin (5-6 junior), Abby Marcum (5-7 junior), Shian Meeks (5-6 senior) and others, CRHS is expected to field a pretty competitive team this season.
The Lady Tigers are scheduled to open the season on December 2 at home against Logan.
“Practices have been going very well,” Chapmanville girls’ basketball coach David Williamson said. “We’re trying to get in shape just like everybody else. We lost two seniors who played some last year. We took advantage of the three-week period back in the summer and went to a team camp at Morehead State. We’ve got four freshmen and things have been going very well.”
CRHS could be very good this season if all of the pieces come together.
“Our number one goal is to get the number one seed for the sectional, win the sectional, host the regional for the first time in school history and make it to the state tournament,” Williamson said. “Last year, we had the number one seed in the sectional but Scott upset us. Our goal from Day 1 is to play in Charleston and go and compete.”
Chapmanville will have plenty of firepower in the backcourt with point guard Osborne coming back and with shooters Martin and Hines.
Meeks is back and can play either guard or forward.
“NeNe is a three-year starter and so is Shian Meeks,” Williamson said. “They’ve started since they were sophomores and they played some since they were freshmen. That’s good to have that experience and depth. Martin hit some big shots for us last year. Hines can shoot and she can play a three on offense and a four on defense.”
Marcum returns and will also give the Lady Tigers some scoring and rebounding.
“She was a first-team all-conference player for us as a freshmen,” Williamson said. “She kind of had a sophomore slump last year. She’s looked good at practice. She’s versatile. She can play some wing and she can play some post. That’s where we hope to find some mismatches. We’re looking for a big year out of Abby too.”
Williamson said Kara Browning, a key reserve on last year’s squad, did not go out for the team this season.
Taylor Manns, a 5-9 junior post player, who saw significant playing time last year, is also back for the Lady Tigers.
“She came off the bench last year and gave us big minutes in the post,” Williamson said. “She’s been a rebounding machine here at practice.”
Sophomore guard Jacy Baxter (5-7) and freshmen post players Madison Webb (5-11) and Kaylee Blair (5-10) are also fighting for playing time.
Shay Pridemore, another freshman, also with frosh Reese Ellis (5-5), are also pressing for time. CRHS also has freshmen Kaylee Blair (5-10) and Brooklyn Evans (5-6) on the roster.
“We’ve got a real good freshmen crew,” Coach Williamson said. “Some of these freshmen are going to see varsity minutes. Two of them are really competing for a starting spot.”
Sophomore Haven Adkins (6-0) is the tallest player on the team. Junior Richelle Thompson (5-6) could also see some playing time on the wings, Williamson said.
“This is the deepest team that we ever had,” he said. “I think that we can go 10 deep and not fall off a whole lot. We’re looking forward to the season. We’re excited.”
Rounding out the Lady Tigers’ roster are: junior Hannah Sparks (5-4); junior Megan Satterfield (5-5); and senior Caitlin Workman (5-7), who Williamson said is “a scrapper and will dive for loose balls on the floor.”
Chapmanville still has a fairly young team as Workman, Osborne and Meeks are the only seniors on the entire squad.
The Lady Tigers play a very difficult schedule. At the top of the list is a home-and-home series with Cardinal Conference rival Sissonville, the defending Class AA state champs, a team CRHS could meet in the regional tourney if the Lady Tigers make it that far.
Chapmanville also has a home-and-home series with Class AAA Logan, a game at last year’s Class AA runner-up Fairmont in the Big 10-Cardinal Conference Shootout, and also a game at always-tough Summers County. In addition, CRHS plays Wyoming East on Feb. 9 at the Charleston Civic Center. Wyoming East boasts a 6-5 freshman player, who is a Division I recruit.
“I may be going out on a limb but this might be the toughest schedule that a Chapmanville girls’ basketball team has ever played,” Williamson said. “We’re playing a lot of teams that I would say will be in the top five in the state. That’s going to help us out a lot down the road. But I have confidence in this group.”
CRHS again battles with Wayne, Tolsia, Scott and Mingo Central in its Class AA sectional.
2015-16 Chapmanville Regional High School
Girls’ Basketball Schedule
Dec. 2: Logan, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 8: Poca, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 11: at James Monroe, 6 p.m.
Dec. 12: at Summers County Tournament, TBA
Dec. 16: Sissonville, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 18: at Fairmont, 6:30 p.m.
Dec. 22: Tolsia, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 30: Scott, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 7: at Wayne, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 12: at Logan, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 14: Herbert Hoover, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 20: at Tolsia, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 22: at Mingo Central, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 25: at Sherman, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 27: Wayne, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 29: at Herbert Hoover, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 2: Sherman, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 4: at Poca, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 9: vs. Wyoming East (at Charleston Civic Center), TBA
Feb. 11: at Scott, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 16: at Sissonville, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 18: Mingo Central, 7:30 p.m.