The Craig County boys’ basketball team was eliminated from post-season play with a loss in the first round of the Pioneer District tournament last week. Craig dropped a 41-34 decision to visiting Bath County in New Castle.
A poor start proved to be Craig’s downfall, as the Chargers jumped to a 9-0 lead. Craig never caught up after that, drawing to within three points but no closer.
“We didn’t shoot the ball well,” said Craig coach Ryan Frazier. “We were getting some good shots but we just couldn’t get them to go down.”
The Rockets trailed 21-15 at the half, then made a run in the third quarter to cut the margin to 31-28. However, Bath held off the Craig boys down the stretch and advanced to the semifinals while the Rockets’ season came to an end.
Caleb Todd led the Rockets with 15 points while Wyatt McPherson had 11. After the tournament, won by Covington with a 55-53 victory over Parry McCluer in the championship game, the all-district team was announced. Craig County’s Dalton McPherson was named to the second team while Todd and Wyatt McPherson were honorable mention.
The Rockets finished the season with a 3-15 record. They’ll graduate four seniors, Noah Nichols, Jakob Jones, Jesse Brizendine and Dalton Frango. The three returning starters were the three all-district boys and Devin Hutchison was a strong sixth man who will move into the starting lineup next year.
“We have some talent returning,” said Frazier. “We showed steady improvement this year and I expect us to be much better next season.”
Frazier will also benefit from some talent coming up from the jayvee team. He’ll also have a full off-season to work with the team. He was hired just weeks before the first practice last fall.
“With me being here, that will really help,” he said. “The kids will know what to expect and we’ll keep them in the gym. We’ll be starting open gyms in a few weeks.”