Lady Vikings Take Top Seed Into Tournament
Alishia Mosley turned in an amazing performance Monday, capping off a stellar regular season campaign by sinking nine three-pointers and scoring a career-high 32 points as Union Pines defeated Douglas Byrd 63-32 on Senior Night.
With their 10th straight victory, the Lady Vikings (18-5, 10-2) finished as the Cape Fear Valley 3A Conference regular season co-champions along with Westover (16-5, 10-2). A coin flip earlier Monday handed Union Pines the No. 1 seed from the conference for the postseason, which began last night with first-round league tournament games.
Union Pines, which received a first-round bye for the tournament, will host both girls' semifinals Thursday, with the first game tipping off at 6 p.m. and the Lady Vikings taking the floor around 7:30.
"I am just so proud of our whole team that we made it to first place," said Mosley. "I always knew we could do it, but at the beginning of the year, it seemed like everybody had already counted us out. Western Harnett, Overhills and Westover all began the season ranked in the state and were the talk of this league.
"Earlier today, I checked the computer and we are ranked 18th, but I feel like we can be number one. We just have to work even harder, continue playing team ball and always leave everything out there on the court."
After a 1-2 start in league play, the Lady Vikes won their final nine conference games. Of the two teams tied atop the conference standings, whichever advances furthest in the conference tournament will be the No. 1 seed from the conference in the state playoffs.
In the opening quarter Monday, Union Pines led 11-8 with 2:45 left on the clock, before Mosley made her second three-pointer of the night at the 2:32 mark. She would sink two more shots from downtown as the Vikes finished the period on an 11-1 run to build a 22-9 lead.
By halftime, Mosley had 22 points. She went 7-for-11 from downtown in the first two quarters, including a 29-foot, fade-away swish at the buzzer that put the Lady Vikes in front 40-20 at intermission. She made two more bombs in the third period as the Vikes held a 51-23 advantage through three quarters.
Between the varsity boys' and girls' games, Mosley, the Lady Vikes' lone senior, and the rest of Union Pines' senior boys' basketball players, cheerleaders and scorekeepers were acknowledged in a brief ceremony.
"I wanted to have a solid game on Senior Night," Mosley said, "but I still came out playing my game and just took the looks that were there for me. Now that the game is over, I have to admit, this was a wonderful way to go out in my last regular season home game here at Union Pines."
On the night, Mosley went 9-for-14 from three-point land while tallying seven rebounds, four assists and two blocks.
Vike junior captain Tyesha McLean had 10 points, four steals, three rebounds and three assists, while freshman center Tyler Ross joined Mosley and McLean in double figures with 11 points and eight rebounds. Sophomore Crystal Hicks had 13 boards, six assists, four steals and scored four points.
The Lady Vikings will play the winner of the game featuring four-seed Western Harnett against five-seed Southern Lee in Thursday's semifinals.
See thepilot.com for Tuesday's first-round results.
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