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Season ends for Barons with loss in Region 2A tournament

South Boston News
Nic Abretnathy posted 21 points in Bluestone's regional game Saturday. / February 26, 2020

The Bluestone varsity basketball boys lost their Region 2A opening round game to Thomas Jefferson 83-41 in Richmond on Saturday, bringing the Barons’ season to an end.

The 12th seeded Barons (6-17) qualified for the Region 2A tournament after claiming the final spot in the 12-team regional field. Thomas Jefferson (11-9) entered first round play as the five-seed out of the Colonial District.

With the win, TJ moved on to meet fourth-seed Arcadia (14-4). The Vikings pulled off the upset against Arcadia to advance to the semifinal round. TJ (10-12) will visit No. 1 seed John Marshall (18-2) tonight as both teams seek to move on to the championship game.

The winner of the TJ-Marshall game will play the victor of the Greensville County (21-4) vs. Brunswick County (18-4) matchup as both schools qualified for the semifinals. Greensville is the two-seed, Brunswick the three-seed.

Bluestone’s Nic Abernathy, recently selected to the All-James River District first team, led the Barons with 21 points on Saturday. The remaining Baron players who posted points were all in the single digits — the highest being five points by senior point guard Larry Bullock.

In Saturday’s game Bluestone got off to a slow start, while TJ pounded the goal and the boards to open on a strong note. Bluestone was down 24-6 at the end of the first period and while things did improve some for the locals as the game wore on, it wouldn’t be enough to stymie a powerful Vikings team.

Bluestone’s shooting percentage and scoring increased in the second period with the Barons knocking down 11 points. But at the same time TJ scored 25 in the frame to take a commanding 49-17 lead at halftime.

Abernathy had nine first half points to pace Bluestone. TJ’s Travis Williams had 15 points in the second period to lead his team. Williams ended the night with a game-high 23 points.

Bluestone lost the third and final periods 23-16 and 11-8, in that order, for the 83-41 final score.

Barons head coach George Lancaster said after the game that the team “ran into a buzz saw.” But Lancaster also expressed that he was pleased with the way his players handled adversity throughout the season to qualify for postseason play.

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