By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
LYNN CAMP — Both Corbin and South Laurel advanced to the 13th Region title game by picking up wins in semifinal action Wednesday.
Corbin improved to 28-8 on the season after upending Jackson County in three sets (25-15, 25-14, 25-16).
The Lady Redhounds led 11-9 in the first set before pulling out the win and was tied at 12 apiece in the second set before winning.
“This week we have been focusing on playing the cleanest and most aggressive with the most speed that we have,” Corbin coach Liberty Roberts said. “I think they are trying this week as a team to take it over by themselves. I was happy with them overall.”
Roberts credited her team’s serving as a big key in the win.
“We’ve had some games where it has been our weakness, so we’ve got to make serves first and when we do that, it helps,” she said.
In the nightcap, the Lady Cardinals (19-6) didn’t waste any time putting away Harlan County in three sets (25-5, 25-18, 25-19).
South Laurel cruised to an easy 20-point win in the first set before the Lady Black Bears began to put some pressure on them during the final two sets.
“We told them coming into the game they needed to be prepared and mentally prepared because we needed to keep going on track and be prepared for tomorrow,” Greer said. “They started out that way, but they got a little too relaxed and it was hard to keep their momentum going.”
The win sets up a fourth meeting between Corbin and South Laurel with the Lady Redhounds winning all four matches.
Two of the matches have went five sets, including last week’s 50th District title game.
Despite seeing her team winless against their 50th District rivals this season, South Laurel coach Fawn Greer likes the Lady Cardinals’ chances of advancing to state play.
“I think we’re ready,” she said. “Our last match with them at the district was so close — they have the heart and I think they’ll come out and bring their heart the next game. It’s hard to tell what team will come out, but I think we’re ready to fight for it.”
By Les Dixon / Sports Editor
- Local Sports
The Williamsburg Yellow Jackets are partying like it's 1987! That was the last time the Jackets won a game in the 13th Region Tournament, and they ended the 27-year drought with a 47-44 win over the heavily-favored Knox Central Panthers on Thursday night.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'Em
When it comes to picking region tournament games, it’s not an easy task to say the least. This is the most parity that I’ve ever seen in the 13th Region Boys and Girls Tournaments.
If Clay County’s play during the first game of the 13th Region Tournament is any indication of things to come, Robert Marcum’s squad could be well on its way of capturing their second straight 13th Region championship.
The Way it is
Since I’m picking Corbin to pull off the upset against Jackson County today, I figured I’d give my top five upsets dating back to 2005-06 when the 13th realigned and welcomed both North and South Laurel high schools to the mix.
Tony Pietrowski’s Corbin Redhounds have been favored during the past two first round 13th Region match-ups, and have been upset both times. Corbin is hoping things might change a bit this time around.
Barbourville will have hands full against Bell County today
Dinky Phipps’ Barbourville Tigers are looking for their first 13th Region Tournament win dating back to 2006’s tournament when they defeated Clay County in the regional semifinals.
Like It or Not
There’s an elephant in the room at this year’s 13th Region Tournament, and really in basketball in general, and I guess I’ll be the first one to point it out (publicly with my name attached to it).
Chris' Daily Region Pick'Em
With the first three days of opening round games in the books, I can honestly say I'm not surprised that I'm 4-2 overall when it comes to my pick'ems record.
You can never count out the Clay County Lady Tigers when it comes to the 13th Region Tournament.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'em
After going just .500 during the girls games, things are going to get even tougher when it comes to picking the 13th Region Boys Tournament games.
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