WATCH: State semifinals in the area, Pulaski County and Patrick Henry girls advance

Parry McCluer boys advance, will face Altavista for title

ROANOKE, Va. – It was a busy night in Southwest Virginia with nearly a dozen area teams competing in the VHSL basketball state semifinals.

Starting with Class 5 girls action, Patrick Henry dispatched visiting Potomac Falls 61-37 to advance to the program’s first state final. Coach Mike Hedrick has been busy building a perennial power, and gives all the credit to a tough group of veteran Patriots.

“Very blessed to have the players I have, very lucky to have Savannah Derey here for every game I’ve ever coached,” Hedrick explained. “I’ve had Shelby Fiddler and Minnie Childress for every game I’ve every coached. I’ve had them since they were 8th granders. I rely on them and anyone who watches knows they are our kick starters they do everything for us so right now I just drive the bus and they run the show,” Hedrick said.

The Patriots will face Princess Anne, a 71-30 winner of Lloyd Bird in the other Class 5 semifinal.

In Pulaski County, the girls basketball Region D champions hosted Loudon Valley, who won the Region C title. It was a low scoring, defensive battle for most of the game that ended 31-31 in regulation. A four minute overtime period looked to go into another tied at 39 all, but a buzzer beater by Keslyn Secrist sent the Cougars to the State Championship game against Louisa County Saturday.

“It felt so good, I had the confidence and knew it was going in. After I made it, it was a great feeling. I don’t even know, I can’t express how proud I am of my teammates and I’m so proud of each and every one of them and I’m so glad we get to go back this year,” Secrist said.

A hop and a skip down I-77, the Carroll County Cavaliers were in another state tournament appearance, hosting Spotswood. This matchup got out to a hot start offensively, with Spotswood going on two different scoring runs to gain nearly a double digit lead in the first and fourth quarter. Carroll County did take the lead late in the third quarter, but Spotswood was able to pull away to get the win, 52-45.

In girls Class 2 action, Glenvar had a tall task in trying to topple defending Class 2 Champion Gate City. Olivia Harris pitched in 20 but the Blue Devils had too much, advancing to the finals by a score of 55-38.

Meanwhile, the Class 1 girls semifinal between George Wythe and Honaker was postponed and moved to Thursday night at 7.

On the boys side, the two-time region champion Patrick Henry boys lost a heartbreaker to visiting Stone Bridge in the Class 5 semifinals.

In Class 4, Halifax County managed to take visiting John Handley to overtime, but the Judges managed to prevail 52-49. Halifax County makes its first final four appearance since 1975.

In Class 3 action, LCA became the third straight are team to fall to Abingdon. The Bulldogs Jalen Leftwich managed 19 points, but Jake Thacker countered with 22 for Abingdon in a 58-55 win.

The Class 2 semifinal featuring the Radford high boys and Union boys will take place Friday night at 7. It’s worth noting that Class 3 state finalist Abingdon has one loss on the season--to Union.

In Class 1, Parry McCluer handled J.I. Burton 51-46 behind the work of Spencer Hamilton. He had 31 points, 10 rebounds and 5 blocks. The win sets up a interesting collision between coach Mike Cartolaro and his former team, Altavista. The Colonels slipped by Mathews setting up the reunion of the Fightin’ Blues coach and his former school, where his team’s won four state titles in his time there.

Boys Basketball Scores:

Parry McCluer 51, J.J. Burton 46 -- Blues will face Altavista Saturday night

Radford vs. Union, Postponed until Friday at 7 p.m.

Abingdon 58, Liberty Christian Academy 55

John Handley 52, Halifax 49

Stone Bridge 67, Patrick Henry 66

Radford vs. Union, Postponed until Friday at 7 p.m.

Girls Basketball Scores:

Gate City 55, Glenvar 38

Spotswood 52, Carroll Co. 45

Pulaski County 41, Loudon Valley 39 Cougars will battle Louisa Co. for State title.

Patrick Henry 62, Potomac Falls 37 Patriots will face Princess Anne for the championship.

About the Authors:

Brooke Leonard is the newest addition to the 10 Sports team, joining in June 2019.

Eric is no stranger to the Roanoke Valley. He is a Roanoke native and proud graduate of William Fleming High School.