TIMES TRIBUNE (CORBIN, Ky.)
By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
CORBIN — Coming in to Tuesday’s showdown with Corbin, Whitley County head coach David Halcomb said he wanted to get a gauge on how much his team had improved since last season.
After knocking off the defending 13th Region champions, 3-1 (21-25, 25-19, 25-13 and 25-18), Halcomb may have gotten a true measure of just how good his Lady Colonels are.
“This is a match we’ve been looking forward to since the summer really, because Corbin is the (defending) region champ,” Halcomb said. “We wanted an opportunity to see if we had improved on last year and we really wanted to play a good team in our region.
“This is a really good win for us,” he added. “These girls work really hard and they showed how much they wanted the win tonight.”
As for Corbin, head coach Liberty Roberts admitted her team was outworked and that the mistakes they made were the kind that can beat a team when playing quality competition.
“I definitely felt like they (Whitley County) came out ready to not make any mistakes and we just didn’t do that,” Roberts said. “I felt like we came out strong in the first set, and even though we got down in the second, we weren’t going to back down.
“We had a lot of errors on coverage that you just can’t afford when you’re playing against a team that is going to play it back over every time,” she added.
Corbin looked ready to play after picking up the first set win, 25-21, but the Lady Colonels came storming back in the second set, despite trailing early. Whitley County took the lead at 18-7 and never looked back as it grabbed the 25-19 win.
It was more of the same in the third set as the Lady Colonels led the entire way, storming out to a 19-6 lead to put Corbin on its heels. Whitley County closed out the win, 25-13, to take a 2-1 lead in the match.
After Halcomb’s squad took an early lead for the second straight set, Corbin battled back to tie things up at 13 apiece, but the Lady Colonels wouldn’t have it.
Whitley County outscored its opponent 12-5 to close out the third set (25-18) as well as the match.
“We’ve got a lot of talented girls on our team and I thought it showed tonight,” Halcomb said. “These girls really wanted this win and it showed by how hard they played.”
Corbin has now dropped consecutive matches to 13th Region foes for the first time since it fell to Harlan and Whitley County in September of 2011.
Roberts said the loss could be used as a teaching tool for her team, saying that when a team is striving to be the best, opponents tend to put a bulls eye on them evry time they step on the floor.
“They’re (Corbin) not a team that is used to losing against region opponents, so it is a good way to kind of let them know they can’t rest at any time,” Roberts said. “We have to come ready every time we get on the floor.”