WEST LIBERTY – It was a showcase night for West Liberty-Salem’s girls basketball team on Thursday, as the Tigers beat Greeneview 56-48 to claim the Ohio Heritage Conference title for the first time since 2011.
“That was one of their goals this year – to win the OHC,” WL-S Coach Dennis McIntosh said. “We’ve still got two more games to get ready for the tournament and they’re big games for us, so I think we’ll play hard. But it was nice to get this wrapped up tonight.”
That wasn’t all for the Tigers, as Jamie Peterson recorded her 1,000th career point late in the second quarter.
“She means a lot to us. She’s worked hard and from her freshman year to now, she’s just grown so much as a person and as a player. We’re going to hate to see her leave,” McIntosh said.
The Tigers (17-3, 12-1) trailed 11-8 after a quarter and 23-19 at halftime despite Lily Yoder connecting on a long three-pointer at the buzzer before intermission.
But an inspired WL-S squad came out of the dressing room and stormed back to a 37-35 lead after three quarters, then sealed the victory at the free throw line down the stretch.
Peterson recorded a team-high 19 points in the win despite not logging a point in the final quarter of play. Taylor Lauck added 13 points – including going 9-of-9 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter – and Gabby Hollar chipped in 10.
Peterson’s 1,000th came with 59 seconds left in the second quarter on a put-back basket off a Hollar miss.
“I’m glad Gabby missed the shot,” Peterson joked before switching to a more serious tone. “I can’t thank my team enough. They do an amazing job of getting me the ball all the time. But I think it’s more about what we do at the end of our season. We’ve got some business to finish in the tournament and we need to show everybody what we’re made of. We’re not done yet.”
In the jayvee game, Greeneview prevailed, 33-31. Maddie Estes had 7 points while Laine Godwin scored 6 and Kiana Reames also scored 6 for the Tigers.
West Liberty-Salem will host Southeastern on Saturday in the Tigers’ final home contest of the season.