By Brian Hoffman
The William Byrd boys will get on a bus and ride an hour and a half to Dry Fork Friday night to open the Region 3D basketball tournament. The Terriers will meet the Trojans of Tunstall High in an opening round game.
Byrd is the ninth seed in the 10 team tournament and Tunstall is eighth. The top six teams get first round byes with the seventh and eighth hosting the ninth and 10th seeds. The Terriers have not played Tunstall but coach Josh Cunningham has seen them on video.
“It looks like they have a couple good athletes,” he said. “They get good crowds, it should be a good experience for our kids.”
If Byrd wins Friday the Terriers would play top-seeded Cave Spring next on Tuesday at Hidden Valley, as Cave Spring High is currently being renovated. The Knights are 22-2 after beating Patrick Henry in the River Ridge District final on Tuesday night, but Byrd has played Cave Spring tough in both of their meetings this season.
“They’re a really good team and we tend to get up for them,” said Cunningham. “We shot pretty well against them, and shooting always gives you a chance.”
The Terriers come into the regional at 8-16 after falling to William Fleming in the Blue Ridge District tournament semifinal round. The Colonels took a 69-45 win Friday night at Staunton River.
Byrd played Fleming, the top seed, tough for three of the four quarters. Unfortunately the Colonels outscored Byrd 25-5 in the third quarter and that was the difference. Byrd trailed just 28-24 at the half and the fourth quarter was dead even at 16-16.
“We had a couple turnovers to start the second half and they started to get it going offensively,” said Cunningham. “Once they get it going they’re hard to stop.”
Jamie Cawley had a dozen points to lead the Terriers. Landon Johnson and Ethan Tinsley had nine points each.
Fleming went on to win the BRD tournament championship Tuesday with a 67-64 overtime win over Northside.