Lady Jackets fall to Harlan County

Published 5:30 am Tuesday, February 15, 2022

Contributing writer

Harlan County used a 16-0 run in the second quarter on Friday to down host Middlesboro 53-39 and seal the second seed in next week’s 52nd District Tournament.

Karst paced the Lady Bears with 16 points. Jaylin Smith scored 10. Hailey Austin and Taytum Griffin tossed in nine points apiece for HC.

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It will mark Harlan County’s third straight season to finish second place in the district standings.

“I think our kids showed they are capable of stepping up and knocking down shots,” said Harlan County coach Anthony Nolan.

Bell County has secured the top seed with Harlan and Middlesboro standings at 1-5 in the district play.

A few coin flips will be made in a 52nd District meeting slated Monday at Bell High to determine to schedule next week.

Sophomore center Halaya Brown scored nine points to lead the Lady Jackets, who lost three players to injuries during the course of the game, including standout senior forward Kailey Owens.

After a slow start, Harlan County led 10-8 lead after one quarter.

Middlesboro reclaimed the lead with a 9-2 run to open the second quarter before HCHS went on a 16-0 run. The Lady Bears took a 28-19 lead into the locker room.

Karst hit four of five shots in the third quarter and Austin added two baskets as Harlan County extend its lead to 43-33 after the three quarter.

Austin and Paige Phillips had two baskets each in the fourth period as HCHS outscored the Lady Jackets 10-6.

Harlan County improved to 16-10, winning six straight games.

Middlesboro suffered a 66-32 loss at Perry Central on Sunday, falling to 9-15 on the season.

The Lady Jackets are scheduled to host Williamsburg on Monday, Leslie County on Tuesday and Red Bird on Friday to close the regular season.

Harlan County 53
Middlesboro 39
HARLAN COUNTY (16-10) – Ella Karst 7-15 0-2 16, Taytum Griffin 4-7 0-0 9, Hailey Austin 4-8 0-0 9, Jaylin Smith 5-10 0-0 10, Taylor Lunsford 1-4 0-2 2, Kylie Jones 0-2 0-0 0, Paige Phillips 2-4 1-2 5, Abigail Fields 1-2 0-0 2, Jaylin Preston 0-0 0-0 0, Cheyenne Rhymer 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 24-52 1-6 53.
MIDDLESBORO (9-14) – Gracie Gent 2-4 1-2 7, Mallory James 2-10 4-4 8, Keevi Betts 2-9 3-7 8, Kailey Owens 2-10 4-4 8, Halaya Brown 4-9 1-1 9, Trinity DeRossett 0-0 0-0 0, Trinity Partin 1-1 0-0 3, Anna Myers 1-1 0-0 2, Millie Roberts 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 13-39 9-11 39.

Owens leads Middlesboro to win
Kailey Owens fired in 21 points and Keevi Betts scored 19, including five 3-pointers, as visiting Middlesboro edged Betsy Layne 68-64 last Tuesday.

The Lady Jackets also got 13 points from Halaya Brown. Malloy James tossed in nine points and Gracie Gent added six.

Middlesboro hit 23 of 42 from the field for 55 percent. The Lady Jackets outrebounded Betsy Layne 36-33. Owens led Middlesboro with 14 boards.

Junior guard Madi Meade led the Lady Kats with 28 points. Skyla Kidd scored 14.

Betsy Layne, who defeated Harlan 51-33 on Saturday, improved to 6-129 on the season.

The Lady Kats will visit Magoffin County on Monday and play host to East Ridge on Tuesday.

Perry Central downs Lady Jackets
Middlesboro dropped a 66-32 decision to homestanding Perry Central on Sunday.

The Lady Commodores improved to 16-12 on the season.

Since 2001, Middlesboro stands at 0-8 against the Lady Commodores.

Perry Central will wrap up the regular season on Wednesday at home against Breathitt County.

The Lady Commodores will open the 54th District Tournament at Hazard against the Lady Bulldogs on Monday.

Middlesboro’s opponent in the upcoming 52nd District Tournament will be announced this week. The tournament will open Monday at Bell County High School.