Barons ousted from regional tourney

Bluestone junior guard Nicholas Abernathy received special recognition as a first-team all-district selection.

Basketball season is done at Bluestone, with both the varsity boys and girls teams falling on the road Saturday in the Region 2A tournament.

The 12th-seeded boys lost at fifth-seeded Thomas Jefferson 83-41, while the 10th-seeded girls fell at Prince Edward 46-37.

Coming off a district championship last season, the Bluestone boys basketball program faced considerable adversity during 2019-20. Not only were the Barons tasked with replacing seven seniors off last year’s team, they also lost two senior starters to off-the-court issues midway through the season.

The remaining players, many of whom were underclassmen, came together to eek out six wins to finish 6-10 in the James River District and 6-17 overall, good enough for the 12th seed in the Region 2A tournament.

“It is said often that ‘you are what your record says you are,’ but it does not tell all the events of the season,” Hall-of-Fame Coach George Lancaster said of the 2019-20 team. “We are happy to have had the kids finish out as well as they did. Of the 11 players we took to the tournament, 10 of those return next year. We are pledged by every young man to be a better team next year. I'm sure that we will achieve after working hard this summer and fall.”

Junior guard Nicholas Abernathy received special recognition as a first-team all-district selection.

Meanwhile, the Bluestone girls basketball program followed up last season’s winless campaign with four wins in the James River District during the 2019-20 regular season, earning the 10th seed in the Region 2A tournament.

A pair of all-time Bluestone athletics standouts led the comeback, with former 1,000-point scorer April Bullock taking over as varsity head coach, assisted by former multi-sport Lady Barons standout Essence Pulliam, who head coached the Lady Barons JV team to a 14-4 record after the JV program failed to finish the season a year ago.