Sevier County Bearettes Dominate Spring Valley (WV) in Winterfest Shootout


SEVIERVILLE — The Sevier County Bearettes were on their home floor for the Winterfest Shootout, where they met the Lady Timberwolves of Spring Valley High School (West Virginia). The Bearettes dominated this one from the opening tip, pulling away to take a 71-51 win.

The Bearettes have played in the Winterfest Shootout before, making it to the Championship round on several occasions, but this was the first time that they’ve walked away as champions.

Bearettes’ head coach Jonathan Shultz said he told the team going into the game how important it was to win out on their home floor, and said they did what they needed to do in all three tournament games they played this week.

“We’ve been in this tournament over ten times, made it to the championship at least half of those, and never won it. I told the girls that yesterday, and today they came out ready to play,” Shultz said. “I thought all week the girls played really well, focused, and determined to win.”

Cybil Penland led the scoring effort for the Bearettes with 19 points, followed by Kinley Loveday with 16, and Aubree Laney with 11.

Loveday knocked down a pair of three’s early in this one, combined with a three from Penland as Sevier County jumped out to an 18-8 lead in the first quarter.

A Penland layup followed by a pair of free throws from Burden saw Sevier County close out the first quarter with a 22-11 lead.

Spring Valley worked to chip away at the Bearettes’ lead to start the second quarter, cutting their deficit to 25-16 early in the quarter before a basket inside from Laney put the Bearettes back in front by double digits.

Sevier County managed to close out the first half on an 11-0 run, including shots inside from Penland and Kinley Loveday, as well as a corner three from Carsyn Loveday, extending the Bearettes’ lead to 42-20 going into halftime.

The Bearettes’ scoring barrage continued into the third quarter, including a pair of three’s early in the quarter from Burden and Penland. Sevier County closed out the quarter with shots inside from Kinley Loveday and Mandy Saunders, taking a 63-36 lead into the fourth.

Coach Shultz said the third quarter was the turning point in the game, telling his team at halftime that they had the ability to pull away with this one if they stuck to the game plan and kept Spring Valley from narrowing the gap.

“I told the girls at halftime, the third quarter was going to be critical. If you can maintain the lead, then they either have to start fouling or taking chances,” Shultz said. “The third quarter I thought we did what we needed to do. Played hard, played good defense.”
The fourth quarter allowed coach Shultz to play some of his underclassmen, eventually playing all 12 girls on the roster, something the Bearettes have managed to do in all three tournament contests.

Coach Shultz said that’s been one of the key things he was looking for from the tournament, building some depth and finding out more of what his underclassmen are capable of.

“That’s what we need, we need depth. When we get in foul trouble, or in certain situations, I’m trying to figure out who is the go-to,” he said. “Who can I put out there to take those minutes when I have to have somebody.”

Sevier County eventually came away with the win in this one, 71-51, bringing home the 2023 Winterfest Shootout Championship.

They’ll have some time off before their next game, a district contest against Jefferson County on Friday, Jan. 5.

Coach Shultz said they’re going to allow for a few days of rest coming out of tournament play, before gearing up for the second half of the regular season.

“Told them to relax, get some rest, a lot of them have logged a lot of minutes in the past three days,” Shultz said. “Let their bodies recover, then we’ll come back and get back at it.”

The Bearettes move to 15-2 on the season, and will go on the road to take on the Lady Patriots next Friday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *