By Chris Parsons
JACKSON COUNTY — The North Laurel Lady Jaguars dug a hole too big to climb out of Thursday as they fell 59-32 to Clay County in the 49th District championship game.
The Lady Jaguars (6-25) failed to score a point in the first quarter and trailed 30-8 at the end of the first half. Lady Jaguars’ coach Eddie Mahan said he felt like his team was out of the game early on and was never able to recover.
“From the first missed shot that was in and out, our mentality just kind of dropped from there,” Mahan said. “They got very aggressive. We wilted away. We showed the team that we had been a few weeks ago and not the team we had been the last week or so.
“I’m very disappointed in our mentality for that,” he added. “We’ve got some things to work on before the region tournament.”
North Laurel managed to mount some offense in the second half, but the Lady Tigers outscored them 18-11 in the period to extend the margin to 48-19 with one quarter to play in the game.
The Lady Jaguars outscored Clay County 13-11 in the final eight minutes, but eventually fell 59-32 as the 49th District Runner Up.
The Lady Jaguars have a few days to prepare for the 13th Region Tournament, which will get underway next Tuesday. Mahan said there’s plenty of work for his team to do between now and then.
“Clay County is probably the best team in the region right now, so we are not going to see anybody better than that. That is the good news,” Mahan said. “The bad news is everybody is pretty good at this point.
“We’ve got to have the mentality that we know we can win instead of thinking we can,” he added. “We went in thinking we can win. If you just think something, it can change in a ballgame with one or two missed shots.”
Ashley Wyatt led the Lady Jaguars with nine points in the loss, while Hannah Gray added seven.
Clay County’s Morgan Chestnut led the Lady Tigers with 19, while Cheyenne Madden chipped in 14.
49th District Tournament Tournament
at Jackson County High School
Clay County 59, North Laurel 32
North Laurel 0 8 11 13 32
Clay County 20 10 18 11 59
North Laurel (32) — Wyatt 9, Chestnut 3, Gray 7, Smith 3, Lawson 3, Rains 2, Carpenter 3, Ellington 2.
Clay County (59) — Robert 4, Cotton 8, Mathis 4, Chestnut 19, Madden 14, Robinson 7, Smith 2, Woods 1.
North Laurel falls behind 20-0 before losing to Clay County, 59-32
By Chris Parsons
- 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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