WISE — Union coach Zack Moore imagines that one day, most of his players will fully share his appreciation for winning the ultimate Lonesome Pine District boys basketball tournament.
For the time being, he’s got one on his roster who is decidedly pumped about the role he got to play in history.
Wing Colby Addington scored 26 points to lead the Bears to a 60-39 win over Wise Central in Friday’s championship game at the Prior Center at Virginia-Wise.
Addington was named the tournament's most valuable player for the second year in a row.
“I thought it was a great honor to play in the last LPD game. It will be a great memory for me down the road,” said Addington, who also finished with six rebounds and four steals.
“To be able to say we were the last season and tournament champions of the LPD ... and to be the last MVP of the LPD is pretty awesome.”
Post Logan Schoolcraft came off the bench to give Union 12 points. Desmond Burney scored nine points and had seven rebounds for the Bears (17-7). Tyler Vernon had nine rebounds and blocked three shots.
Caleb Mills was the Warriors’ only double-figure scorer, finishing with 10 points. Mills and fellow guard Jimmy Williams, who finished with seven points, hit only one 3-pointer apiece.
Moore was pleased with his team’s second-half defense in general and Tanner Hall’s assignment on Mills specifically.
“I liked our energy. Defensively, we were good. They ran some pretty good stuff for Mills and Williams. Those two guys shot the lights out the other night. So we really focused on getting through screens and getting to them,” Moore said.
Williams had six rebounds to lead Central (9-15) on the boards. Mills and Aaron Thompson had five boards apiece.
“We went stale offensively in the second half. I thought they picked up their defensive effort and got physical with us and we couldn’t shake loose,” said Warriors coach T.J. McAmis, who, like Moore, is a player alumnus of the LPD.
In the consolation game, which could prove consequential for the Division 1 bracket of next week’s Region D tournament, the Raiders got 25 points from Ervin Beaty in a 62-43 win over Clintwood.
Both teams are 11-13 overall headed into Sunday’s seeding committee, but the victory gave Burton two out of three versus the Greenwave head to head. Clintwood also claimed a regular-season victory over Black Diamond divisional rival Haysi.
Beaty had 12 rebounds for Burton, which outrebounded the Greenwave 51-26 and got 23 points off the offensive boards.
The Raiders’ Alex Keys scored 14 points and had 10 rebounds. McKenzie Blair led Norton on the boards with 13 rebounds.
“We got humbled a week and a half ago at Union and our group has really worked hard. I thought it really paid off tonight. Our conditioning was good and our effort was good,” Burton coach Aaron Williams said.
Robbie Mullins led the Greenwave with 25 points, giving him exactly 1,000 for his career. He was recognized for the accomplishment after his bucket with 1:19 remaining. Moments later, he retired from the game.
“They killed us on the boards tonight. We knew they were going to, but we didn’t box out at all and they got a lot of second-chance opportunities,” said Clintwood coach Evan McCowan.
“I’m proud of Robbie. That’s a great accomplishment for anybody. But we need to play team basketball coming into the regional tournament — on defense and offense.”