By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
The Whitley County Lady Colonels have lived up to their preseason expectations and are at or near the top on a lot of publication’s 13th Region rankings — and they should be.
The Lady Colonels are 12-4 on the season, which includes wins over defending 13th Region champion Clay County, Corbin, Lafayette, South Laurel and Casey County, but they’re not finished.
Larry Anderson’s squad is hoping to send their coach out with his first-ever 13th Region championship and the program’s first since 1985 when the Lady Colonels went on and captured the state crown.
“I think we are in there with three or four teams that have a shot at winning the region,” Anderson said. “The girls are really playing well, but we also know we have some tough games ahead of us. We’ve got a lot of big games coming up.
“You know Clay County is going to be there in the end along with Corbin, who had a big win against Clay and Assumption and then you have Harlan County and Bell County. It’s going to be interesting.”
Whitley County made some noise in the region before Christmas break by going to Clay County and picking up a 58-55 win thanks to a buzzer-beating three-pointer by Brandi Smith, which snapped Clay County’s 61-game 13th Region win streak.
The Lady Colonels picked up another big win just this past week against red-hot Corbin. They went on the road and handed the Lady Redhounds a 76-67 loss, as Smith poured in a season-best 33 points.
“There are wins that you have during the season that you go back to and can say they were important and helped in a certain way,” Anderson said. “The win against Corbin was a big one for us. We were in a hostile environment and Corbin battled back a number of times before our girls pulled it out.”
Now with a tough part of the season ahead, Anderson hopes his squad can continue to play like they have without the services of Kandice Craig and Hallie Jones.
Both players are out with injuries with Craig scheduled to come back in February while Jones should be back in action by the end of January.
“Losing both of them has been hard,” Anderson said. “The big thing is that we’ve got to have other people step up and we’ve had that so far.
“Brandi Smith has really picked her game up another level,” he added. “She played really well for us against Corbin. She hit some key shots and we were able to come away with a win.”
With that said, Anderson hopes his team can keep it up with games against South Laurel, Williamsburg and Harlan County on the horizon.
“We’ve got some tough games ahead, so we just need to continue to play well and see what happens,” Anderson said.
Whitley County continues to impress with record standing at 12-4
By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
- Local Sports
It’s hard to imagine anybody as big as Corbin head coach Jason McDaniel having any trouble filling shoes.
Here we go again
It'll be a matchup between two of the most historic programs in the 13th Region tonight when the Clay County Tigers defend their 13th Region title against the Corbin Redhounds.
The Way It Is
We’re not even through with the 2013-14 season yet, but it’s never too early to talk about next season. Since we’ve crowned a 13th Region champion on the girls’ side of things, let take a glimpse of what might be for the 2014-15 campaign.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'em
Well, here we are, Corbin vs. Clay County for the right to see who will represent the 13th Region next week at Rupp Arena in Lexington.
For the seventh time in the last 10 seasons, the Corbin Redhounds are headed to the 13th Region finals, after their 56-48 win over the Bell County Bobcats in the semi-finals on Saturday.
Like It or Not
I hate to steal an idea, but I guess in the end that's what everyone seems to be doing these days. After reading Les Dixon’s list of what he thought were the top five upsets in recent memory of the 13th Region Tournament, I decided to rank my top five basketball movies in today's column. With that said, here goes.
Williamsburg sees Cinderella run come to an end
For the third straight year, the Clay County Tigers are playing for the 13th Region Championship and the opportunity to play in the Sweet Sixteen at Rupp Arena, after their 79-58 victory over the Williamsburg Yellow Jackets on Saturday.
- 13th Region Tournament Schedule
Clay County, Bell County fall in semifinal round
Both Corbin and Harlan had to withstand battles during the 13th Region semifinals, but when all was said and done, they both won, punching tickets into the finals of the 13th Region Girls Tournament title game.
Pick Up Game
Six straight 50th District titles and a 10-game winning streak were not enough to place the Corbin Redhounds as the favorite heading into their matchup with the Jackson County Generals in the first round of the 13th Region Tournament.
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