By Wade Linville –
The Eastern Lady Warriors are sectional champs after topping the Lynchburg-Clay Lady Mustangs for the third time this season by a score of 60-56 to claim a Southeast District Division III Sectional title on Feb. 17 at Lucasville Valley High School. “It’s hard to beat a good team twice in a season, let alone doing it a third time,” said Eastern head coach Kevin Pickerill in a post-game interview following Saturday’s sectional championship win. “I don’t want to play Lynchburg again!” The Lady Warriors knew coming into the sectional championship bout that putting a stop to Lynchburg’s standout guard, Peyton Scott, could be a difficult task. “Peyton (Scott) is probably the best player on the floor, so that takes a lot of our attention,” said Pickerill. Scott did manage 24 points to lead all scorers in the contest, but it was an excellent team effort by the Lady Warriors that would lead to the win with three Eastern players reaching double figures in scoring. Leading the way for the Lady Warriors in scoring was junior Alexa Pennington with 16 points. Eastern senior Whitney Broughton finished with 15 points. Also scoring for double figures was Eastern junior Morgan Reynolds with 12 points, and contributing nine points to Eastern’s side of the scoreboard was sophomore guard Camryn Pickerill, sinking three shots from beyond the arc. Rounding out Eastern’s scoring in their sectional championship win were Allison Malott and Mikayla Farris with four points each. “I thought for three quarters we did a real good job,” Kevin Pickerill said of his Lady Warriors’ performance on Saturday. “We handled what they threw at us. They threw multiple defenses at us in the first half, and even the second half, and I thought we did a good job handling that. We lost our composure a little bit there in the third or fourth quarter, and we were taking some unnecessary jump shots that we were hitting early. I think we got fatigued there late (in the game), and we were coming up and hitting the front of the rim on different things. They did a good job of keeping us off the boards and we didn’t get those second attempts on a lot of those possessions.” The No. 3 seed Lady Warriors advanced to district tournament play at Waverly High School with their sectional win over Lynchburg-Clay and were scheduled to face the winner of the sectional championship bout between No. 2 seed Southeastern and No. 7 seed Oak Hill on Feb. 22.