Heritage’s football team danced in Salem Stadium three months ago.
Salem made sure there would not be a repeat in boys basketball Saturday.
Alex Light, an offensive tackle on Salem’s football team that lost to Heritage in the Division 4 state semifinals, scored 16 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to lift the Spartans to a 53-45 win over the Pioneers in a Division 4 basketball quarterfinal at Salem Civic Center.
Light was a perfect 7-for-7 from the field and 2-for-2 from the foul line as Salem seized an early lead and held on to advance to a semifinal at 9 p.m. Thursday in Richmond against Potomac Falls.
John Repass added 12 points for Salem (17-10). Justin Joyner led Heritage (20-7) with 16 points.
Tay Taylor is one of three Salem girls basketball players who is a natural left-hander and whose father trained to shoot right-handed.
Taylor made it pay off Saturday at Salem Civic Center as she used several drives for left-handed layups to score a game-high 16 points and lead the Spartans to a 46-34 victory over Roanoke Valley rival Lord Botetourt in a Group AA Division 4 quarterfinal.
It was the Spartans’ third win over the season over Lord Botetourt (15-12).
Maddie Price hit three 3-pointers and added 13 points as Salem (24-3) booked a semifinal date at 11 a.m. Wednesday in Richmond against Loudoun County, a 53-48 winner over Grafton earlier Saturday in Norfolk.
Tessa Foley added 12 points for Salem, all in the first half.
Bassett’s girls also advanced to Richmond with a 57-44 win over Region III champion Heritage. Kaliya Barbour led the Bengals (17-4) with 13 points and nine rebounds. Bassett had Heritage at arms length for most of the game.
Bassett will face 2012 Division 4 runner-up Courtland in a semifinal at 7 p.m. Tuesday at VCU.
The Bengals last made the semifinals in 2000 when they won the Group AA title under former head coach Lisa Black.
The boys basketball teams from Essex and J.I. Burton brought losing records to Salem for VHSL basketball quarterfinal games.
Both will move on to Richmond for the semifinals after victories early Saturday.
Essex (9-12) has just beaten Dan River 52-49 in a Group A Division 2 quarterfinal, getting a go-ahead 3-pointer from Keith Bundy, Jr. in the final 30 seconds to wipe out a 49-48 deficit. Bundy added a free throw with nine seconds left and the Wildcats missed a potential tying shot at the buzzer.
It was the second straight heartbreaker for Dan River in Salem. The Wildcats fell to eventual state champ Lancaster last March when a last-second stickback rolled out.
Saturday’s first fantastic finish came in the first of seven games as J.I. Burton (14-14) defeated Bland County 46-44 in a Group A Division 1 boys on a last-second jumper by Alex Keys. The game-winner by Keys sparked a celebration at midcourt that featured one Burton player performing backflips.
All four runners-up defeated region champions in Division 1 games matching Region C against Region D. Castlewood took a 52-47 win Friday over Covington, while Northwood topped Clintwood in girls quarterfinals. Parry McCluer’s boys bounced back from a loss to Bland County in the Region C final to defeat Castlewood 53-34 on Saturday at UVa-Wise
Floyd County’s girls and Radford’s boys had no such worries Friday night, posting comfortable wins
In a Division 3 girls quarterfinal in Wise, Richlands overcame an early deficit to defeat Brookville 47-45 in overtime.