Booher leads Lady Indians to championship of Hancock Holiday Classic
Berkeley Springs sophomore Amber Booher recorded a double-double in each game of the two-day Hancock Holiday "Shoot the Lights Out" Classic, leading the Indians to the team title in the four-team event. Booher scored 16 points and pulled down 11 rebounds on Friday, December 29, against Southern Fulton and then poured in 20 points and grabbed 10 more rebounds in the championship game against Hancock the following night.
"Amber had a great tournament," said Berkeley Springs coach Dale McCumbee. "She had a good touch inside and used the glass well. Of course her teammates did a good job of feeding her the ball. We were very unselfish and passed the ball well. I really liked our ball rotation. Kids were passing up marginal shots for better ones."
Berkeley Springs had to beat a good team from Southern Fulton on Friday, December 29, to reach the finals, and it was not an easy task. The two teams battled back and forth through the first half of the game with Southern Fulton holding a slim 32-30 lead at the break. Berkeley Springs came out of the locker room and turned up the defensive pressure, leading to a 17-6 run and a nine-point lead, 47-38, heading into the final quarter of play.
Southern Fulton whittled away at the lead, cutting the margin to a single point 56-55 late in the final quarter, before the Tribe went on a 5-1 run and hung on for the win, as Southern Fulton's three-point shot at the buzzer fell short.
"Southern Fulton is always tough," McCumbee said. "They are well coached and always battle. You know you're going to get their best shot and they have a really good guard in Destane Whiteside."
Booher led the Indian offense with 16 points, Alex Tamez added 14, Ashley Hovermale 10, Rebecca Trump six, Kayla Hill five, Sarah Risinger four, Courtney Kesecker three and Jessica Haynes two.
Whiteside led Southern Fulton with 23 points.
The Indians came out a little flat in the championship game and Hancock raced out to an early lead before Berkeley Springs settled down and took control of the game on their way to a 68-33 win.
"Hancock played really well in the beginning of the game," said McCumbee. "We were a little out of sync to begin the game, but we kept our composure and came back to win. We turned up the defensive pressure and, I think, our depth was a big factor in this win."
The Indians, after falling behind, rallied for a 17-12 lead after the first eight minutes of the game and then really took control with 22 second-quarter points, while holding the Panthers to seven.
Berkeley Springs extended their lead to 53-29 after three quarters of play and then coasted to the easy victory.
"One thing I really liked was our balanced scoring in both games," McCumbee said. "If we can continue playing unselfishly and spread the ball around, we will have a much better chance of succeeding. We still need to shore some things up defensively if we want to compete with the better teams on our schedule, but I am encouraged with this result."
Booher once more led the Indians with 20 points. Trump scored 15, Hovermale 11, Tamez nine. Kesecker five, Risinger three, Danielle Shields and Shauni Stevens two each and Haynes one.
Booher had 10 rebounds and five steals, Kesecker pulled down nine rebounds and had three blocks, Tamez dished six assists and recorded five steals, Trump grabbed seven rebounds and had three assists, while Risinger came up with a pair of blocks for Berkeley Springs.
Kris Creek led the Panthers with 12 points.
Booher, named the tournament MVP, was joined on the all-tournament team by Tamez, Hancock's Creek and Holly Funk, Southern Fulton's Whiteside and Clear Spring's Dice.
Southern Fulton defeated Clear Spring 77-32 to finish third.
The Indians, now 5-4 on the year, play Hedgesville at home this evening, January 3 and then will have a week off before playing Paw Paw at home on January 10.