Dylan Jenkins put on a ball-handling clinic and scored 27 points and the Blue Devils overcame a slow start to beat Virginia High 72-64 for the boys’ conference title.
In the preceding girls’ title game, the Lady Blue Devils attacked Wise Central with suffocating defense, confining the Lady Warriors to an unthinkable solitary third-quarter point in a 41-22 victory.
The Gate City girls’ defensive MVP was Morgan Gose, who played a big part in holding Wise whirlwind Logan Reynolds to seven points.
Megan Edwards led the Lady Devils with 10 points and Jordan Gose scored eight. Post Jordan Houseright was a beast on the defensive end, blocking five shots.
In the boys’ game, Nick Qualls scored 16 points for Gate City, crediting Jenkins’ silver-threaded passes for setting up his easy finishes. Jenkins had seven assists, also pulling down seven rebounds. Caleb Herron scored six but was a dynamic agent provocateur at both ends of the floor.
Touré Fudge scored 17 points to lead Virginia High, contributing seven to the opening blitz but going silent in the fourth quarter. Derrick Lee scored 15. Starting post Noah Walker sat out the game with a heel injury.
Both Gate City teams open 2A West play at home next week. The Lady Blue Devils host Grayson County on Tuesday night. The Gate City boys confront Richlands on Wednesday.
The Bearcats (19-6) goes to Graham on Wednesday and Central (20-5) travels to face the Lady Blue Tornado at Richlands on Tuesday.
None of this would have been altered had the losers’ fortunes been reversed. Even so, the Gate City Middle School gym was packed to the rafters with noisy fans clamoring for championships.
For an expanded version of this article, please see Sunday's print edition or our electronic edition.