THERE WERE some familiar names on the dais for Martinsburg following the Bulldogs' 45-31 semifinal loss to Morgantown.
Two of the players, seniors Kieera Basey and Kiana Bullett, are related to a couple of famous West Virginians.
Basey, a 5-5 point guard, is the daughter of former Martinsburg star Nyesha Basey and the niece of former Martinsburg and West Virginia University standout Marsalis Basey.
Bullett is the niece of former Major League player Scott Bullett, who spent parts of three seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago Cubs.
This was their third trip to the state tournament, where the Bulldogs fell in the quarterfinals every year. The last time Martinsburg reached the semifinals was 2009 - when both players were in the eighth grade.
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ST. JOSEPH will continue its quest for a Class A record fifth consecutive state title at 1 p.m. Friday when it faces the winner of Wednesday's Tucker County-Williamstown game.
The only other Class A team to win four straight championships was Mercer Christian, which won from 1999-2002.
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PHYSICAL PLAY and injuries were a hallmark of the first day of the tournament.
"I had to calm myself down and make sure I didn't do anything stupid," Spring Valley sophomore Brooke Heck said after the Class AAA No. 1 seed Timberwolves beat Capital 84-60.
Hard fouls led to at least three occasions when two or more players crashed to the floor, a theme that was consistent throughout the day. As a result, several players spent considerable time on the bench nursing injuries.
Valley senior Alexis Payne got tangled up with Wheeling Central's Colleen McCormick in the morning session, a violent collision that sent Payne to the bench for much of the second half with an injured shoulder. Earlier in that game, Valley junior guard Alayasha Taylor injured her knee and was carried off the court, not to return.
Morgantown senior guard Leah Taylor, who had spent much of the last week on crutches after injuring her ankle in regional play, tweaked the ankle in the second quarter of the Mohigans' win over Martinsburg, but was able to return.
Spring Valley's McKenzie Morris injured her left foot after coming down awkwardly on it after hitting a 3-pointer in the first half against Capital. Morris did not return.