Hampshire tops Keyser 52-35

Chapin Jewell
Tribune Correspondent
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KEYSER - In the second game of the season back on March 8 at Sunrise Summit, the Hampshire Trojans handed Keyser a 30-point 71-41 loss. On Friday, one day after Keyser had done battle with and lost to cross-county rival Frankfort, the Golden Tornado welcomed Hampshire to Keyser for round two.

The good news for Keyser is that the Black and Gold would hold the Trojans to 19 less points than they did in the first go round, 52 points as opposed to 71, definite improvement. The bad news, unfortunately, is that Keyser would muster only 35 points, six points less than in the first matchup.

The ending result would be a 17-point 52-35 victory in favor of the visiting Trojans.

For Keyser, the Frankfort and Hampshire contests were the first games back after a two-week layoff that stretched from March 11 to March 25. The layoff was COVID-quarantine related as the result of possible exposure from a previous opponent. Just as Keyser got some momentum going with a win over Moorefield, the two-week layoff and loss to Frankfort effectively halted that momentum.

Hampshire would start fast, jumping out to a 9-2 lead.  The Trojans would hold on to take a 12-8 advantage at the end of the first period. Keyser would pull to within one point (19-18) at the 3:14 mark of the second quarter, but the Trojans would finish the first half strong. Hampshire would close out the remaining three plus minutes on an 8-2 run to take a 27-20 lead into halftime.

“We changed some things up to start the game, which I think slowed them down some,” Keyser coach Johnny Haines stated. “Eventually, they started pressing us, which we didn’t handle well. They made a pretty good run in the third quarter that we couldn’t recover from.”

Hampshire would continue with the positive momentum into the third period. In the third stanza, the visiting Trojans outscored Keyser 17-9, almost doubling up the Golden Tornado, to take a 15-point, 44-29 lead at the end of the third period. A slim, 8-6 advantage in the fourth period would propel Hampshire to the 52-35 victory.

In the victory, Hampshire was led in double figures by Alex Hott with 11 points and Trevor Sardo with 10 points.  In addition, the Trojans garnered seven points from Drew Keckley, six point each from Zack Hill and Christian Hicks, and five points apiece from Mikhi Anderson and Carter Smith to account for the bulk of the scoring.

In the loss, Keyser was led in double figures by Hunter VanPelt with a game-high 17-point performance, followed by Darrick Broadwater with 12 points to account for the bulk of the scoring.

“I was happy with Hunter VanPelt, he looked to score in this game, which we need him to do that every game because we are struggling to score with the basketball.  We just have to continue to get stronger mentally, improve each game, and have more than three players score a field goal,” Haines explained.

Keyser was victorious in the junior varsity context by a close score of 40-34. The junior Tornado were led by Noah Broadwater with a game-high 13 points.  Easton Shanholtz led the junior Trojans with 11 points.

Keyser (1-4) will next travel to Tucker County on Thursday, April 2, with junior varsity action inbounding at 5:45 p.m., and varsity action to follow at 7:30 p.m.