By Paul Adkins
CHARLESTON — The Chapmanville Regional High School boys’ basketball team had a three-pronged strategy in its game against the No. 1-ranked Poca Dots on Wednesday in the Class AA state tournament at the Charleston Civic Center.
One, slow the tempo.
Two, limit Poca’s possessions and work for good shots.
Three, use the “Jordan Rules” against Poca’s top scorers Luke Frampton and Elijah Cuffee by playing tight defense and contesting every shot.
It was a brilliant plan.
And it nearly worked.
No. 8-seed Chapmanville gave defending state champion Poca a huge scare and nearly pulled off the massive upset but still fell short, 30-28, in shockingly close state tournament clash.
Tied at 28, the Dots (24-2) won it as Frampton scored on a putback with one second left after Cuffee airballed a baseline jumper.
Poca’s Luke Frampton scores on a game-winning putback with one second left, putting the Dots ahead 30-28. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Chapmanville called timeout with 0.8 ticks to go and had one last chance but an inbound pass to Drew Williamson near halfcourt was deflected and time ran out.
The Dots deflect a Chapmanville pass to Drew Williamson at the buzzer to hold on for the win. (Video by Paul Adkins)
The Tigers closed out the season 17-9 and lost its second straight game in the state tournament. Chapmanville last played in 2014 and fell 63-34 to Bluefield.
Poca survived despite a miserable night shooting. The Dots were a woeful 20 percent from the field, making only 7-of-35 of its field goals, including 1-for-11 from 3-point land.
Cuffee, the leading scorer in the Cardinal Conference at 20.5 points per game this season, was held to two points on a woeful 1-for-12 shooting. He made that up by grabbing eight rebounds, blocking five shots, dishing out three assists and getting two steals.
Frampton led the way with 21 points. He hit the only 3 of the night for the Dots and saved Poca by hitting 14-of-15 of his free throw attempts.
It was one of the differences in the game.
Senior Jordan Whitt and the sophomore Williamson led the Tigers with 10 points apiece.
Using Scott’s playbook, the Tigers slowed the game way down. The Tigers used the weave, milking the clock at times and frustrating the Dots, which had survived a 20-10 game against Scott last week in the regional tournament.
The third time was nearly the charm for Chapmanville which had been blown out twice this season by Poca by lopsided 94-43 and 60-37 scores.
Chapmanville led 26-24 after three quarters of play and went up 28-24 with 5:48 left in the game as Tyler Moore scored on a lay-in.
Tyler Moore’s inside shot gave Chapmanville a 28-24 lead. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Tigers’ coach Brad Napier talks to his team after the third quarter with Chapmanville up two points. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Frampton pulled the Dots to within 28-26 with 5:39 remaining as he was hacked on a 3-point shot and netted 2-of-3 free throws.
Frampton then tied the game at 28-28 with a lay-in with 5:05 to go after Austin Henrich forced a Chapmanville turnover.
Chapmanville then ran the weave at the top of the key taking minutes off the clock.
The Tigers run the weave and milk the clock as the game was tied at 28. (Video by Paul Adkins)
The Tigers tried to go ahead but Williamson’s drive to the bucket was thwarted by the Poca defense and a steal by Cuffee and a tie-up went to the Dots with 1:21 left.
Poca forces a tie-up with the score tied at 28. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Poca then slowed the game down and held the ball for the final shot.
The Dots started off the game strong with a 3 by Frampton and an 8-0 lead but went just 3-for-19 from the floor in the first half for a Pluto-cold 15.8 percent. Despite playing so poorly, the Dots still led Chapmanville 20-16 at the break. Frampton scored 15 of those points and kept the Dots ahead as he went a perfect 12-for-12 from the charity stripe.
The Tigers trailed 14-6 after one quarter and began to make their move in the second period.
Williamson’s 3 cut it to 16-9 with 6:36 left. Whitt then completed an old-fashioned three-point play to inch the Tigers within 16-12. Whitt’s turnaround shot from eight feet out made it 18-14 with 3:42 to go.
Browning’s drive to the lane put CRHS within 20-16 at halftime.
In the third quarter, Chapmanville outscored the Dots 10-4 to grab the lead.
Whitt’s drive to the lane cut it to 20-18 with 7:29 left.
Chapmanville Regional High School’s Jordan Whitt scores on a shot in the lane to inch the Tigers to within 20-18 in Wednesday’s loss to the Poca Dots in the Class AA state tournament at the Charleston Civic Center. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Then at the 4:51 mark, Whitt drilled a 3-pointer from the corner as the Tigers trailed only 22-21.
Chapmanville’s Jordan Whitt drills a 3-pointer from the corner as the Tigers pull to within 22-21. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Williamson then had the shot of the game for Chapmanville as he canned a 23-foot 3-pointer from the wing with 3:10 left, giving the Tigers their first lead of the night at 24-22.
The Tigers’ Drew Williamson’s 23-foot 3 gives CRHS a 24-22 lead. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Cuffee’s steal and layup with 2:28 to go tied it up at 24.
Elijah Cuffee’s steal and score ties the game up at 24. It was his only bucket of the game. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Browning then put the Tigers on top 26-24 with 2:02 left as he sank a pair of free throws.
Moore and Browning tossed in four points each for CRHS.
Moore led the Tigers on the boards with seven. Whitt and Hunter Neil had five each. The 6-foot-7 Neil also had three big blocked shots.
Browning handed out three assists, while Dylan Smith had two and Williamson one.
Chapmanville was just 10-for-32 shooting for 31.3 percent. The Tigers made 5-of-7 free throws while The Dots were 15-for-17 for 88.2 percent.
Chapmanville outrebounded Poca 28-23.
Frampton also had seven setals.
Poca’s 30 points are believed to be the fewest scored by a winning team in Class AA tournament history. The previous record (38) was set in 1967.
Chapmanville’s 28 points scored are also a record low for the Class AA state tournament. The previous low was 30 was set in 1978.
The Dots advance to play Wyoming East on Friday at 1 p.m. in the 2A state semifinals.
— Look for more on the Chapmanville-Poca game, including coaches and player’s comments and still photographs, in Friday’s Logan Banner print edition
Chapmanville coach Brad Napier meets Poca coach Allen Osborne before Wednesday’s state tournament game. (Video by Paul Adkins)
The Chapmanville and Poca starting lineups are introduced. (Video by Paul Adkins)
Browning 1-4, 2-4, 4; Smith 0-4, 0-0, 0; Williamson 3-9, 2-2, 10; Whitt 4-7, 1-1, 10; Neil 0-0, 0-0, 0; Moore 2-8, 0-0, 4.
Totals: 10-32, 5-7, 28
Cuffee 1-12, 0-0, 2; Henrich 1-4, 0-0, 2; Frampton 3-9, 14-15, 21; Meeks 1-7, 0-0, 2; Dotson 1-2, 1-2, 3; Phillips 0-1, 0-0, 0.
Totals: 7-35, 15-17, 30
Chapmanville…..6 10 10 2 – 28
Poca………………14 6 4 6 – 30
3-point goals — Chap 3-10 (Browning 0-1, Smith 0-2, Williamson 2-6, Whitt 1-1); Poca 1-11 (Cuffee 0-4, Frampton 1-3, Meeks 0-3, Phillips 0-1). Technical fouls — none. Fouled out — none.
2015-16 Chapmanville Regional High School
Boys’ Basketball Schedule (17-9, 8-6):
Dec. 15: at Herbert Hoover, W 63-60
Dec. 19: vs. Bridgeport (Big 10/Cardinal Conference Challenge at WVSU), L 49-64
Dec. 22: at Mingo Central, W 61-55
Dec. 28: Mount View (Bob Runyon Memorial Holiday Tournament), W 50-46
Dec. 29: Man (Bob Runyon Memorial Holiday Tournament), W 77-71
Jan. 2: Scott, L 72-75 (OT)
Jan. 8: Poca, L 43-94
Jan. 15: Man, W 67-64
Jan. 16: vs. Pikeville, Ky. (Hatfield-McCoy Shootout, Williamson), W 71-60
Jan. 19: Sissonville, W 65-55
Jan. 22: at Wayne, W 66-63
Jan. 28: at Tolsia, L 60-80
Jan. 30: vs. Huntington St. Joe (King Coal Classic at Logan), L 64-69
Feb. 2: at Poca, L 37-60
Feb. 5: at Scott, L 62-66
Feb. 9: vs. Charleston Catholic (Little General Shootout at the Big House, Charleston Civic Center), W 61-52
Feb. 13: Mingo Central, W 60-44
Feb. 16: at Sissonville, L 52-63
Feb. 19: Wayne, W 87-70
Feb. 20: Tolsia, W 71-57
Feb. 23: at Man, W 62-59
Feb. 26: Herbert Hoover, W 58-36
March 1: vs. Tolsia (2A sectionals at Logan), W 65-41
March 3: vs. Scott (2A sectionals at Logan), W 38-36
March 10: vs. Sissonville (2A regional final), W 57-55
March 16: vs. Poca (2A state tourney, Charleston Civic Center), L 28-30