TIMES TRIBUNE (CORBIN, Ky.)
By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
NORTH LAUREL — Coming into Tuesday’s showdown with district rival North Laurel, Corbin head coach Liberty Roberts said her team wanted the win for several reasons.
One of those reasons was the fact the top seed in the district was at stake after Corbin dropped a five-set marathon to the Lady Jaguars when the two faced off earlier in the season, the other was simply to see if her team had improved.
Both questions were answered as Roberts and company cruised to the 3-0 (25-16, 25-17 and 25-18) win, securing the top seed in the upcoming district tournament.
“This was big because our district is always competitive, especially since you have to play each other throughout the season,” Roberts said. “You never want to have to play a team more times than you need to, because you may have to face them in the district tournament.
“It was important for our girls to get the win because they wanted to show that they have been working hard to get better as the season has progressed,” she added. “You never want to go in a gym and assume the outcome just because of what happened in the past, and I felt like our girls really earned the win tonight.”
As for the Lady Jaguars, head coach Haley Ratliff said she wasn’t exactly sure what happened to the team that had beaten Corbin earlier in the season and admitted it was almost like the Lady Jaguars had regressed as far as their quality of play.
“Our girls’ heads just weren’t in it tonight. It was a totally different team. They went back to what I had at the beginning of the season,” Ratliff said. “I don’t know what it was, but hopefully we can figure it out real soon.
“It was like we were in cement. I will admit that,” Ratliff said. “The girls for Corbin see the floor extremely well. They saw all the holes. As soon as we would double block they would tip it right over the back. Hats off to Corbin. They had a great game plan and they followed through on it.”
Corbin trailed early on, but jumped ahead in the opening set and never looked back en route to the 25-16 victory.
The second set was a virtual replay of the first as Corbin led the entire way and held the Lady Jaguars to a five-point deficit most of the way before pulling away for the 25-17 win, giving Roberts’ squad a 2-0 lead.
The Lady Redhounds led early in the third set, but North Laurel looked poised to send the match to a fourth set when they closed the gap to two points on several occasions. It wasn’t to be though as Corbin eventually pulled away for the 25-18 win and three-set sweep.