Bees run out of honey
By Andy Bitter
Saturday, March 8, 2008

ROANOKE - Nearly four minutes had passed and the Brookville girls basketball team's score hadn't budged, locked on zero as the turnovers and missed shots mounted. The Bees couldn't have picked a worse time to come out flat.
 
Defending state champion Hidden Valley scored the first 13 points and held Brookville at arm's length the rest of the way, cruising to a 42-30 win at Northside High in the Group AA quarterfinals on Saturday.

Abby Redick, Abby Oliver and Kylee Beecher scored all 42 points for the Titans (24-4), who avenged an early-season loss to the Bees (26-2) and advance to play Greensville County in the state semifinals in Richmond on Thursday at 2 p.m.

Saturday's game was out of reach almost as soon as it began. Hidden Valley scored on its first four possessions, prompting a quick time out by Brookville coach Warner Dyke.

It didn't stem the tide. The Titans scored five more points and continued to play a suffocating defense, forcing the Bees into turnovers on five of their first six possessions.

"They came out and stuck it to us early, man. What can you say?" said Dyke, whose team was making its second straight state tournament appearance. "They got in our grill is what they did. They just manned us up. Mano-a-mano."

The Bees had gotten themselves in a similar hole earlier in the season, rallying from a 14-point deficit to beat Staunton River. But ?

"That was a different caliber team," said center Joyous Tharrington, who led Brookville with 13 points. "To get down by that much with a team like this, it's going to take a lot (to come back)."

Like its loss to Waynesboro in the region finals last week, Brookville's offense went ice cold. The Bees were 11-for-37 from the field (30 percent), including a 2-for-16 effort from 3-point range.

"You don't shoot the ball well against great teams, it could be a long night," Dyke said. "It's tough to beat people when you don't score."

"Sometimes that's just the way the wind blows," said senior Brittany Campbell, who finished with 11 points but never found her jumper. "It's not your night for the shots fall. You can't find that rhythm."

Hidden Valley's trio had no such trouble. Oliver, who will play with Tharrington at the University of Richmond next year, led the way with 19 points, going 6-for-6 from the free throw line down the stretch.

Redick, the younger sister of former Duke star J.J., scored eight of her 10 points in the first half. She didn't play in Brookville's 59-44 win in December because of an injury.

Beecher, who will play with Campbell at Liberty next year, took over in the post the second half. She scored nine of her 13 points in the third quarter to keep the Bees at a safe distance. They never got closer than 10.

It was a bittersweet ending for Brookville, who won 26 straight before losing back-to-back games to finish the season.

"We worked hard. We gave it everything we had," Tharrington said. "If you leave it all on the floor and you still lose, you can't really control it."