Raiders fall in season finales, ready for tourney

Oak Hill’s Daniel Harrington and Nate Lamkin set up on defense as Marshall Academy brings the ball up court.

Marshall Academy had no real answer for Oak Hill’s Rachel McLain. Unfortunately, the Lady Raiders also had no real answer for Marshall Academy’s dynamic pair of Kay Kay Parks or Peyton Stephenson.

That duo combined for 48 points to offset McLain’s 25 as the Lady Patriots secured a 55-41 win Tuesday night over visiting Oak Hill.

In the boys game, the Raiders fell behind early in the second half and clawed back within four with a minute left only to fall 52-46. The win sealed first place in the district for Marshall and avenged a loss to Oak Hill at Oak Hill in December, the Patriots’ only district loss of the season.

Oak Hill finished as the second seed in the district.

The district games were the final regular-season contests heading into next week’s district tournament.

In the girls game, Oak Hill got off to a good start, leading 11-9 after one quarter as McLain scored seven points, including a three-pointer and Carley Wooten added a three-pointer.

But Marshall Academy, playing at home, found its stride in the second period, outscoring Oak Hill 21-12 to take a 30-23 halftime advantage.

Marshall kept up the pressure with a 17-10 third-quarter run.

Parks and Stephenson did the damage with Parks, who finished with 26 points, scoring from all over, including hitting four of six free throws in the final period. Stephenson provided a second weapon, stroking from long-range with five three-pointers as part of her 22 points.

McLain scored 14 of her 25 points in the second half, but the Lady Raiders could only muster four points from other positions.

In addition to 25 points from McLain, Oak Hill got nine from Carley Wooten, two each from Julianne Glusenkamp, Anna Grace Reed and Sims Bryan and a free throw from McKenzie Middleton.

“A great game by Rachel McLain but overall, we struggle a little bit on defense in the first half and we still are struggling with our guards scoring,” Coach Mindy Bowman noted.

“We now have to regroup and get ready to battle in the district tournament next week. If we win our first game, we will earn a spot in the North State playoffs. If not, the season is over,” she stated.

Oak Hill ended up as the fourth seed in the tournament and play Marshall Academy, the fifth seed, again Tuesday at 5 p.m. in that must-win game.

The winner plays district champ Central Holmes for a spot in the championship game Saturday afternoon.

Tuesday’s game with Marshall will be the rubber game of the season for the two girls teams since Oak Hill won the opener in West Point in December.

In the boys game, the two teams battled to a 20-20 deadlock at the half before the Patriots edged out to a 37-35 lead after three quarters. The Raiders never could get control down the stretch, despite a balanced attack that saw four players score in double figures.

The Patriots countered with three of their own in double figures, including big second halves from Phillip Parks, who scored 12 of his 16 points in the final two quarters and Zach Sorrell, who scored 10 of his 17 then.

Ash Cullum led Oak Hill with 13 points, Daniel Harrington scored 12, Brandon Stevenson 11 and Cooper Hill 10.

“Overall, I thought we played well,” said boys Coach John Bauer. “We had some defensive lapses in the fourth quarter and then we had trouble scoring to get ourselves back in the game. We were within four with a minute to go.”As the second boys seed, Oak Hill will play Carroll Academy at 5:30 p.m. next Thursday at Marshall. If they win, they’ll play again Saturday.

Marshall plays the second game Thursday against the winner of Central Holmes and Winona Christian. The winner of that game will play the winner of the Oak Hill vs. Carroll game Saturday for the championship.