The sound emitting from within Loudoun Valley’s locker room was something like a snare drum being shot with a machine gun.
The Vikings banged metal lockers like percussion instruments while they howled away their excess emotion in the wake of their second straight AA Dulles District tournament championship.
The 71-60 victory in Friday’s final at Tuscarora (Va.) avenged two February losses to Potomac Falls, including one that gave the Panthers a share of the regular-season crown.
The Woodgrove girls rolled past Loudoun County in another matchup of top two seeds in the girls’ final earlier in the night.
By the end of the night, senior forward Josh Grimard posed for pictures with two trophies, one for the team’s accomplishment and another for his designation as the district’s player of the year.
“We came out with so much more effort, and that made the difference,” Grimard said. “The first two games, we came out scared with not a lot of effort. This game we took it strong to the basket.”
After falling behind 9-4 early, Loudoun Valley (23-3) tied the game and then took the lead with 3 minutes 40 seconds left in the first quarter. Potomac Falls tied it at 29 in the second quarter, but junior Paul Rowley answered with five consecutive points.
Rowley scored 20 of his game-high 24 points in the first half. When sank a three-pointer from at least three feet beyond the arc with one minute left in the second quarter, an already thunderous crowd exploded and brought a sheepish smile to his face.
An 8-0 run by Potomac Falls (22-4) at the start the fourth quarter could have been cause for concern, but Grimard answered with a jumper.
“They’re a very good team,” Loudoun Valley Coach Chad Dawson, the district’s coach of the year, said. “We knew they were going to keep making runs. They never give up.”
Wanya Allen led the Panthers with 16 points and Deandre Thomas added 15. Freshman standout Michael Janowski blended quick crossovers with fadeaway jumpers to add 14 points for the Panthers who lost for only second time in the month of February over the last four seasons.
The offensive output showcased the depth that makes the Wolverines dangerous even when seniors Stephanie Purnell and Sarah Hardison — the Dulles District’s 2012-13 Division 4 and 2011-12 Division 3 players of the year, respectively — struggled to get their shots to fall.
Sophomore Brooke Basinger led the Wolverines (22-3) with 18 points while her senior sister added six. Together, they accounted for all but one of the team’s 14 second-quarter points as Woodgrove built a 25-15 halftime lead.
“In all aspects of my life I just look up to my sister,” Brooke Basinger said. “She’s a great inspiration to me. I just love her.”
While Purnell tallied just two points though the first three quarters, she closed the door on Loudoun County with seven points in the fourth quarter. After the game, she was honored as the top player in the district.
Hardison finished with eight points, continuing to pressure the Raiders with drives to the basket and kick-out passes to shooters, including Maggie Buxton, who drained three three-pointers en route to 12 points.
Maggie Phillips and Chloe Knox each scored 10 points for Loudoun County (21-4), but the Raiders failed to crack double-digit scoring in a quarter until the fourth, when the game was already out of hand.
“That’s our trademark: defensive intensity,” said Woodgrove Coach Kevin Copley, who was named the league’s Division 4 coach of the year. “We try to create chaos.”
By beating Loudoun County for the third time this year, Woodgrove polished off an undefeated run through district. Both teams advance to next week’s Region II tournament.