Raiders Girls Earn a 3-Peat

Triadelphia tames Wheeling in PAC-8 championship game

Photo by Cody Tomer Triadelphia’s Naliah Lekanudos drives against Wheeling’s Ariel Ballard during Thursday’s PAC-8 title game. game at Warwood Middle School.

WHEELING — The future of Wheeling Park girls’ basketball is in good hands.

Soon-to-be Patriots clashed on the court in Thursday’s eighth grade PAC-8 Championship as Triadelphia walked away with its third straight title, a 44-25 victory over Wheeling at Warwood Middle School.

“This means a lot,” Triadelphia coach Dave Stahnke said. “This is my third year and it’s important because I had this group as sixth graders and they came up through. Many of them played up in sixth grade with the seventh grade and were on the eighth grade team last year.

“I’m really happy for them because they kind of built the program the way we have it going right now. I owe a lot to this eighth grade group.

“It’s also good because a lot of girls from our program are playing at Park right now like Asia Roby and NeVeah Cook. It gives this group that drive to want to play at Park, too.”

Naliah Lekanudos paced the Raiders with nine points, followed by Reagan Olejasz’s eight points and Sophie Abraham’s six points, while Natalie Daugherty and Hannah Seivertson each turned in five points.

Jocelyn Walker paved the way for the Wildcats with nine points, Josie Stone chipped in with five and KeAsia King and Jocelyn Shaw each added four.

“This group of six girls has heart like you won’t believe,” Wheeling coach John McCombs said. “I’m so proud of them. They never quit and they keep coming back. They deserve better for as hard as they played.

“They put their heart in it but when you can’t rotate girls out to give them a break, they get tired.

“Give Triadelphia a lot of credit. They have a lot of hustle and they wore us down.”

Triadelphia turned a 7-2 deficit into a 14-7 cushion at the end of the first quarter after a 12-1 spurt.

The Raiders padded their lead in the second quarter by finishing the half on a 6-0 burst for a 22-11 advantage.

Wheeling made its run in the third and got to within 29-23 early in the fourth when Triadelphia took control.

The Raiders used their depth to wear down the Wildcats as they finished the game on a 15-2 run on their way to hoisting the trophy for a third straight season.

“They are the most athletic team in the PAC-8,” Stahnke said. “Hats off to them. They are tall, athletic and strong. Coach McCombs does a great job with them and they play a very good 1-3-1 zone. It’s hard to get in there and do things because of their length and strength.

“But I felt like with our depth of 12 players and them having six, we were able to wear them down.”

Triadelphia finished the season 17-2 with an unbeaten mark in conference play while Wheeling completed an 11-5 campaign with its second straight trip to the championship, after upsetting No. 2 seed Cameron on Wednesday.

7th Grade

Cameron 40, Triadelphia 38

WHEELING — Cameron’s defense kept Triadelphia from scoring on the final play of the game to earn the seventh grade PAC-8 Championship.

Kenzie Clutter led the Dragons with 13 points and Ashlee Dobbs tallied 11.

LaLa Woods paced the Raiders with 18 points and Haylen Cook provided 16.

6th Grade

Triadelphia 37, Cameron 19

WHEELING — Dani Daugherty led the way with 15 points to help Triadelphia secure the PAC-8 title over Cameron.

Keira Sparks supplied 12 points for the Raiders.

Maci Neely garnered 11 points for the Dragons.

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