Congratulations are in order for five Ohio Valley girls' basketball teams.
Those kudos go out to Conotton Valley (1A), Shadyside (2A), Fort Frye (3A), Steubenville (4A) and University High (5A).
All of those squads captured titles at Saturday's Wheeling Hospital OVAC Girls' Basketball Championships which were staged at the spacious Ohio University Eastern campus just west of St. Clairsville.
The Rockets might have had the day's MVP as Olivia Bower torched St. John Central to the tune of 20 points, 15 rebounds and eight blocked shots in a 50-26 romp.
In all fairness to the Lady Irish, they were minus one injured starter while two other regulars were far from 100 percent due to illness.
In the 2A game, which might have been the best of the day, Shadyside exacted some revenge on Wheeling Central from a year prior. The Tigers prevailed 53-44 after holding the Maroon Knights to 10 first-half markers.
Fort Frye continued to dominate at the 3A level, holding top-seeded River to a mere seven points after the intermission in rolling to a 46-22 rout. The victory was a repeat performance for the Cadets.
The 4A game might have been the most heartbreaking as Martins Ferry led by five with 2:56 remaining to play.
However, the Purple Gang went ice-cold as it watched Big Red score the game's final 14 points for a 45-36 triumph.
The loss spoiled a 25-point effort from Ferry's Jessica Kinney.
In 5A, the Hawks and Mohigans traveled from Morgantown to wage a battle that saw the top-seeded Hawks win, 53-41.
Once again, congratulations to the winners, and also to the runnerups for reaching the title tilts.
LIVED UP TO THE BILLING
If you missed it, and judging from the jam-packed crowd not many did, the Class 2A semifinal between rivals Bridgeport and Shadyside didn't disappoint anyone.
The third-seeded Tigers and No. 2 Bulldogs went toe-to-toe last week inside the John J. Havlicek Gymnasium, with the battle-tested Orange winning by three, 52-49.
The game wasn't decided until Caitlyn Kroll's halfcourt shot at the buzzer rimmed out.
During the contest, Shadyside senior Karli Bonar, and University of Findlay signee, became the state of Ohio's all-time record-holder in made three-point field goals.
She meshed seven treys against the Bulldogs, which not only gave her the girls record, but the boys, as well!
Another congratulations goes out to Karli.
BULLDOGS RECEIVE PRAISE
This email came from a Shadyside fan expressing their feelings on the Shadyside-Bridgeport game.
"I hope you will be able to get something in the paper about the class way Bridgeport treated us tonight. They stopped the game and Bridgeport coach Rob Zitzelsberger came out and recognized Karli Bonar for her record. Their fans cheered and after the game Zitzelsberger made sure Karli got the game ball. They were very classy and we appreciated it."
IS UPON US
The road to Columbus and the state tournament begins tonight when Buckeye Local and Edison collide inside 'The Hangar' in Morristown in Division II action.
In case fans haven't heard, the D2 event is being staged in Morristown this season instead of Ohio University Eastern.
Stay tuned to The Times Leader for all the tournament coverage.
North can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org