, Corbin, KY

February 18, 2014

Winding Down

Postseason pairing starting to take shape, Corbin, KY

CORBIN — By Les Dixon / Staff Writer


Player of the Week

Tyler McDaniel, Clay County - Believe it or not, this is only the second time this season McDaniel has been tagged as my Player of the Week. You gotta give him props this week by coming up big in 49th District games.

He scored 21 points during Clay County’s rout of North Laurel, and followed with a 19-point effort during the Tigers’ 68-60 come from behind win over Jackson County Friday.

District Tournament

Seeding Picture

49th District

1. Clay County           5-0

2. Jackson County     4-1

3. North Laurel            2-4

4. Oneida Baptist       1-6

5. Red Bird (automatic five seed)

What’s the scoop? — It looks as if Clay County has the inside track of wrapping up the district’s top seed. The Tigers do have to play at Jackson County Tuesday, but the only way the Generals can get the No. 1 seed is to win by at least nine points or win by eight and hope to win a coin toss between them and Clay County.

The No. 2 seed will have to play North Laurel, which won’t be an easy game.

50th District

1. South Laurel     5-1

2. Corbin              4-2

3. Whitley County      2-4

4. Williamsburg    1-5

What’s the scoop? — South Laurel managed to wrap up its first No. 1 seed since the 2007 season by upending Williamsburg at home this past week, 76-36. Corbin might very well be the hottest team in the district right now, and will square-off against Whitley County in first round action. The Redhounds just beat the Colonels by 28 points a couple of weeks back, while Whitley County managed to handle Corbin during the two teams’ first meeting, winning 61-50.

51st District

1. Knox Central    3-0

2. Barbourville    2-1

3. Pineville        1-2

4. Lynn Camp    0-3

What’s the scoop? —  Knox Central will face-off against Lynn Camp in first round action, and shouldn’t have any trouble advancing to the district finals while an intriguing match-up awaits Barbourville in the two/three seed game. The Tigers have been struggling a bit as of late, and will have a hard time beating Pineville.

52nd District

1. Bell County    5-1

2. Harlan County     4-2

3. Middlesboro     2-3

4. Harlan        0-5

What’s the scoop? — The Bobcats wrapped up the No. 1 seed despite falling to Harlan County this past week, 57-49. Bell County shouldn’t have any trouble with Harlan, but the other match-up between Harlan County and Middlesboro could be a dandy. They have split a pair of games against each other with the Black Bears winning by 10 points earlier in the season while the Yellow Jackets pulled off a 22-point victory a couple of weeks ago.


Struggles galore

The North Laurel Jaguars have hit a wall during the past week, and you can argue that playing a stretch of six games in eight days might be a big reason why combined with some of their players getting hit with the flu bug. The Jaguars remain a team to watch out for, but if you take a closer look, their struggles started right after Christmas.

North Laurel is 6-11 since Dec. 27, including a 3-8 mark during its past 11 games. The Jaguars have dropped games of margins of 15, 15, 16, six, three, 29, 10 and 30 points.

Brad Sizemore’s squad has a week to turn things around.

Who are the teams to beat?

This has been a tough region to figure out this season, but when it comes right down to it, I believe there are three teams that can win the region, while five other teams that can beat any team in the region during a single game.

So who are these teams?

Clay County, Knox Central, and Jackson County are the teams to beat while combining to post an impressive 29-6 mark against 13th Region teams. Knox Central is 9-1 against 13th Region opposition while Clay County is 9-2 and Clay County is 11-3. The Panthers hold the trump card, though. They have wins over both the Tigers and Generals, and both of those victories came on the road.

So who are the teams that can pull off a win, and surprise?

Corbin, South Laurel, Bell County, Harlan County and North Laurel are those teams. The Redhounds were written off just a few weeks back, and are now the hottest team in the region while South Laurel possesses the best all-around player in the region in Zac Baxter. The Black Bears are deep and talented while North Laurel is young, but can beat a team with its talented roster, too.

Top 10

1. Clay County (17-7) — The Tigers remain in the top spot, but Knox Central isn’t far behind.

2. Knox Central (15-9) — It’s hard not to put the Panthers at the top spot after picking up wins over both Clay County and Jackson County.

3. Jackson County (18-8) — The Generals let one slip away at Clay County.

4. Corbin (16-10) — The Redhounds could very well be the hottest team in the region right now.

5. South Laurel (13-13) — The Cardinals are a dangerous team that has the arsenal to surprise.

6. Bell County (15-10) — The Bobcats have it a bump in the road.

7. Harlan County (13-12) — The Black Bears picked up a big win this past week against Bell County.

8. Whitley County (15-11) — Keep an eye on the Colonels, they are dangerous.

9. North Laurel (13-15) — The Jaguars are really struggling right now.

 10. Barbourville (16-9) — The Tigers barely beat out Middlesboro for the No. 10 spot.


Player of the Week

Brandi Smith, Whitley County — Smith is starting to come on strong at the right time, pouring in 32 points during the Lady Colonels’ 69-56 win over Middlesboro.

District Tournament

Seeding Picture

49th District

1. Clay County    6-0

2. North Laurel    4-2

3. Jackson County     2-4

4. Oneida Baptist     2-4

5. Red Bird (automatic No. 5 seed)

What’s the scoop? — Clay County wrapped up the No. 1 seed a long time ago, and the most interesting game in the tournament should be the No. 2 and No. 3 seed match-up between North Laurel and Jackson County.

50th District

1. Corbin        5-1

1. Whitley County    5-1

3. South Laurel    1-5

3. Williamsburg    1-5    

What’s the scoop? Corbin will be the No. 1 seed after a tiebreaker, meaning Whitley County will face South Laurel in the first round. Honestly though, it looks as if Whitley County and Corbin are by far the best two teams in the district.

51st District

1. Lynn Camp     3-0

2. Barbourville     2-1

3. Pineville         1-2

4. Knox Central     0-3

What’s the scoop? — To be honest, I’m not sure who is going to come out of this district. Lynn Camp was red-hot early on, but have struggled during the past couple of weeks. I’m never too sure what to expect out Barbourville and Pineville, and never count out Knox Central on its home court.

52nd District

1. Bell County     5-1

2. Harlan County     4-2

3. Harlan         3-3

4. Middlesboro     0-6

What’s the scoop? — The Lady Bobcats are the team to beat in the district, but last week’s loss to Harlan County shows you can’t count out the Lady Black Bears, but first they’ll need to get past Harlan, and that won’t be easy.

Who are the teams to beat?

Just like with the boys, this is hard to pick on the girls’ side, too. Bell County, Corbin, Whitley County and Harlan County are the top teams in the region while teams like Clay County and Harlan could surprise. Lynn Camp, Barbourville and North Laurel are talented enough to pull off an upset here or there.

But in the end, I believe the region champion will either be the Lady Bobcats, the Lady Black Bears, the Lady Colonels or the Lady Redhounds.

Top 10

1. Whitley County (21-5) — The Lady Colonels picked up two more wins this past week, and after Bell County’s loss to Harlan County, they’re the new No. 1.

2. Bell County (20-4) — The Lady Bobcats drop a spot, but remain one of the top teams in the region.

3. Corbin (19-7) — The Lady Redhounds picked up two big wins this past week, beating Whitley County and Harlan County.

4. Harlan County (18-7) — The Lady Black Bears showed how dangerous they can be by beating Bell County.

5. Clay County (16-10) — You better watch out for the Lady Tigers, they’re going to surprise once postseason play begins.

6. Harlan (17-10) — Keep an eye on the Lady Green Dragons, if they can get out of the district.

7. Lynn Camp (19-5) — The Lady Wildcats are one win away from recording consecutive 20-win seasons in program history.

8. North Laurel (12-15) — The Lady Jaguars are getting hot at the right time.

9. South Laurel (7-18) — The Lady Cardinals picked up a big win against Barbourville on Saturday.

10. Barbourville (13-11) — You never know what to expect out of the inconsistent Lady Tigers.