The Fayette Tribune, Oak Hill, W.Va.


February 19, 2014

WVHIT to conclude at MTHS Saturday

In large part, Mother Nature turned the HIT into a miss Saturday.

Organizers have regrouped and will take another run at it this Saturday at a different locale.

The boys West Virginia Hometown Invitational Tournament was slated to conclude with eight games on Feb. 15 at the Summersville Arena and Conference Center. As has become the norm this winter, snow and/or the threat of snow intruded and whittled to four the number of schools who got the go-ahead and were able to play their games at Summersville.

“If we’d have had a big snow storm Friday night and been done with it, it would have been better,” WVHIT president Greg Crist said when announcing Tuesday that the tournament will conclude at Midland Trail High School on Feb. 22. “The forecast said it was going to clear out, so we kept waiting.

“If was extremely frustrating, but what are you going to do?”

What organizers have done — instead of the ‘cost-prohibitive’ move of trying again to play the games at Summersville, depending on the arena’s availability — is to reschedule five of the contests for this Saturday, culminating with the Division 1 championship game pitting Class A No. 6 Valley (16-1) and Clay-Battelle at 6 p.m. in Hico.

The third-place, fifth-place and 15th-place games were played on Feb. 15, two games at Summersville and one at another site.

Valley and Clay-Battelle met in last year’s WVHIT consolation game, with Clay-Battelle coming out on top.

“They’ve got pretty good size all around and they shoot the ball pretty well,” Valley coach Joe McCoy said of the Cee-Bees. “We’ll have to pick it up on defense, rebound the basketball and make the high-percentage shots.”

Games prior to the Valley-Clay-Battelle matchup will be as follows: noon — Fayetteville vs. Pocahontas County; 1:30 p.m. — Tygarts Valley vs. Van; 3 p.m. — Midland Trail vs. Sherman; and 4:30 p.m. — Meadow Bridge vs. Paden City, Division 2 championship.

Admission is $5.

The games “will be televised (by Local Community Television via Shentel and Suddenlink) throughout a large portion of the state thanks again to Brian Crist and Southern West Virginia Health Systems,” Crist said. “The weather forecast sounds good so hopefully we can pull this thing off.”

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