Lady Mountaineers fall to Avery in OT
NEWLAND – The Avery girls’ basketball team ended Mitchell’s season with a 62-58 overtime win Thursday, Feb. 28, in the second round of the NCHSAA Class 1A State Playoffs.
The Mountaineers finish the season 16-11. The team has finished above .500 in each of head coach Zack McCartha’s three seasons at the helm.
The Mountaineers had no seniors this season and were led in scoring by junior Hannah McMahan (12 points per game). Two sophomores – Paige Johnson and Marley Cloer – also averaged double digits with 10.9 and 10.1 points per game, respectively.
McMahan led the team in scoring in the loss at No. 2 seed Avery, scoring 17 points to complement her team-high 10 assists. Cloer was 5-of-13 from the field and chipped in 16 points.
The Mountaineers trailed 36-28 at halftime but trimmed Avery’s lead to 48-43 after three quarters.
Mitchell scored seven points and held the Vikings to just two points in the fourth quarter to force overtime.
Avery outscored Mitchell 12-8 in overtime.
McCartha said the late rally showed what his team is capable of when they’re at the top of their game.
“We really played tremendously down the stretch,” he said.
McCartha is now 50-31 as the team’s head coach. He said he saw his young team grow during the season and has high expectations moving forward.
“I got to see them grow up,” McCartha said. “They really improved every game. They learned what they had to learn. It was all about getting out there and doing it. I think this team can really do great things.”