MOUNDSVILLE - The easy place to find the difference in Tuesday night's W.Va. Class A Region One, Section One semifinal at the John Marshall Field House, is Chaice Truex's 21-point, 17-rebound effort.
Not that the burly junior didn't have a major say in the outcome, but a couple of guys who combined to score just two - Lavonte Hampton and Jared Yates - paid perhaps the biggest dividends.
Hampton and Yates held sophomore Magnolia scoring sensation Preston Boswell to seven points as the Bishops advanced to Friday night's sectional final against Wheeling Central with a 48-45 victory.
''It's kind of a blur right now, but I thought defensively they did a great job,'' Bishops (17-6) coach Tom Wise said. ''It's a shame that we're in this section where we're so loaded compared to some of the others, but we're where we want to be.''
It wasn't just the fact Boswell was held to seven points, but he only took eight shots as the Bishops refused to let him catch the ball.
''You've got to give their defense credit,'' Blue Eagles (16-7) coach Dave Tallman said. ''They did an outstanding job on Preston.
''But they have a great basketball team.''
Anymore a true back-to-the-basket post player is rare. This game featured a pair in Truex and Magnolia's Zach Willhoite. Each dominated one half with Truex scoring 13 and grabbing seven boards in the first 16 minutes and Willhoite coming to life in the second half, scoring 17 of his team-high 19 points and pulling down all 10 of his rebounds.
Truex helped the Bishops to a 28-15 halftime lead and with Boswell going to the bench with his third foul 50 seconds into the second half and Spencer Campbell also having an off night offensively, the Blue Eagles needed someone to step up. Willhoite tallied nine in the third quarter, Campbell hit a big 3 and Mitch Winters scored in close as Magnolia closed to within 39-37 heading to the fourth.
''Zach really came to life in the second half,'' Tallman said. ''I think we were a little nervous in the first half with starting three sophomores, but we left it all on the floor in the second half.''
The Blue Eagles got the deficit down to two twice more in the fourth but were never able to tie the game or take the lead. Boswell finally scored for the first time since making it 8-4 when he knocked down a pair of free throws with 44.5 seconds remaining, but his off-balance 3-pointer to tie at the buzzer nearly banked in, but just lipped out.
The Bishops survived to meet the Maroon Knights, who they lost to by five earlier in the season at the Undo's Tournament, despite missing a couple of key 1-and-1 opportunities down the stretch.
''They're all big games at this point,'' Wise said. ''I think we're a little bit better prepared defensively at this point. I think we're set.
''It's no secret that Jared and Lavonte are going to be taking (David) Park and (Chase) Harler.
''It should be really entertaining and it would be nice to get the 'W' and be playing right back here.''
Bryce Jones contributed 10 points for the Bishops and Josh Miller netted nine. Jesse Padlow handed out a game-high four assists.
Campbell and Boswell evenly divided 14 and Winters scored six for the Blue Eagles.