The Goodpasture Cougars (20-1, 13-0) defended home court for the Division II-A region championship on Monday night with a win over the Christ Presbyterian Academy Lions (24-4, 13-1), 70-56.
“Goodpasture did a good job controlling the glass,” said CPA head coach Drew Maddux. “They got too many offensive rebounds and second chance points. We did not finish layups and shots at the rim.”
“It is a great accomplishment for our program, our school and our players,” said Goodpasture head coach Adam Sonn. “Going back-to-back as well is an awesome feeling.”
In the first quarter, CPA collected the early lead with jumpers and layups by senior Jordan Dewalt, senior Braden Zapp and junior Evan Shiflet to get the advantage in the frame 21-15.
Goodpasture came roaring back in the second quarter with midrange shots and 3-pointers by senior Patrick Smith Jr., sophomore Isaiah West, eighth grader King Leary and senior Cooper Pennington to go ahead at halftime, 36-27.
In the third quarter, the Cougars continued to feast from behind the arc and in the paint with baskets from Smith Jr., Pennington, freshman Xavier Shegog, junior Josh Williams and junior Chandler Woosley to extend their lead, 53-43.
Goodpasture kept up their offensive clinic in the fourth quarter with 3s and layups by West, Smith Jr., Shegog, Woosley and Pennington to win the region title, 70-56.
The Cougars defense held CPA's explosive offense to 56 points.
“Our guys played the game really focused both offensively and defensively,” said Coach Zonn. “When they (CPA) have a high potent offense averaging in the 80’s, they are extremely good shooters. Our guys knew who to stay attached to, who to keep in front, what things to be ready for, and then, at the same time, make some other guys do enough (to try to) beat us.”
CPA’s three players in double figures were: Zapp with 16 points, Shiflet with 15 and Dewalt with 13.
“We were just utilizing our normal spacing concepts,” said Coach Maddux. “They finished in the paint. Everything we got was near the rim. They were pressing our shooters tonight, and so we tried to take advantage of that and get to the rim. Those guys were able to finish and get the points that we were able to collect.”
Smith Jr. led all Goodpasture scorers with 15 points.
“PJ (Smith Jr.) is a good player and the heart and soul of our team,” said Coach Sonn. “He is the two-time region MVP. We feel like when PJ steps on the floor, that we’ve got the best guard on the floor every night. He took care of the ball and made plays for himself and others.”
CPA will host the loser of Tuesday’s Lausane v. First Assembly Christian School game on Thursday night.
“We haven’t played with good rhythm since the layoff from the snow,” said Coach Maddux. “We hope to get back in the gym and have great practices. We will be more than ready to go on Thursday night.”
With Monday night’s win, Goodpasture received a bye into the quarterfinal game, which will be held on its home court Saturday.