CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Bluefield didn't just kick the door in Saturday afternoon, the Beavers blew it wide open.
The top-seeded Beavers finally put together a complete game in the Class AA state tournament, dismantling No. 2 Fairmont Senior 63-43 in the championship game. A crowd of 7,984 attended the two-game session, which included the Class A title game, at the Charleston Civic Center.
Bluefield (25-3) captured its first state championship since winning back-to-back titles in 1995-96. The Beavers lost to Tug Valley 58-52 in last year's final. Bluefield also finished runner-up in 1997, 1999 and 2006.
The Beavers shot a blistering 51.7 percent in the opening half against Fairmont Senior in taking a 36-23 lead at halftime and finished 50 percent from the floor. Bluefield didn't commit its first turnover until 3:27 of the third quarter.
Bluefield was a little shaky in winning its first two games this week. The Beavers trailed North Marion after the opening quarter of the quarterfinals and fell behind Robert C. Byrd 32-31 at halftime of the semifinals.
"We struggled,'' said Bluefield junior guard Anthony Eades, who poured in 27 points on 9-of-17 shooting and converted all eight free-throw attempts. "We knew we had to step it up.
"We just had to come out hard. We just came to play. We prepared well. I was feeling it in warm ups and I told my teammates just to look for me and they did. They did a really good job of getting me the ball and setting screens for me. All that goes to them.''
Bluefield trailed 6-3 early in the first period, but used a 10-0 run to close out the quarter and charge in front 13-6. The Beavers took the lead for good on sophomore Corey Coppola's jump shot with 3:22 left in the first and never trailed again.
Fairmont Senior (21-7) pulled within two points (16-14) on junior guard Jarin Hilson's three-point play on a driving layup and foul shot with 6:08 remaining in the second quarter. Bluefield, though, answered with a 10-2 surge to extend its advantage to 26-16 with 4:32 to go before halftime. Beavers junior guard Lykel Collier and Eades ignited the flurry with back-to-back 3-pointers, while junior Michael Yost finished it off with consecutive driving layups.
"We like playing with a lead,'' said Collier, who added 12 points, including 10 in the first half, to go along with seven assists and two steals. "When I hit that first 3, I knew it was going to be a good game. We were just playing basketball and having fun.''