By John Middleton
For The Times-Tribune
HARLAN — Harlan County hasn't played its best basketball in recent weeks, but the Black Bears reminded everyone Thursday they are more than capable of putting together a run that ends in Rupp Arena.
Harlan County snapped a three-game home losing skid on Senior Night with a 60-29 rout of Whitley County.
“We are just as good a team right now as we were at the first of the year when we were 11-0. We have just lost some close games. We have some bad luck where we didn’t make a play or two at the end of the game,” said Harlan County coach Mike Jones. “We don't want our fans to give up on these kids.”
The Bears got off to a slow start in the first quarter. Boston Bryant had six straight Whitley County points to put the Colonels on top by two midway through the opening period. Chad Massingill responded with five straight points of his own to put Harlan County up 11-8.
The Black Bears limited Whitley to five points in the second quarter as they began to pull away. Tyler Miller had eight points and Alex Sergent added five in the period as the lead grew to 17 points at the half. Miller, a sophomore forward, continued his strong play and finished with 14 points and six rebounds.
It was Aaron Caldwell’s turn to take over in the post in the third quarter. The senior forward had six points and four rebounds in the period as the lead grew to 41-22.
The Bears continued to dominate on the interior in the fourth quarter. Harlan County’s post players combined for 15 points and eight rebounds in the final eight minutes as the Bears cruised to the win. Harlan County controlled the boards throughout Thursday's contest, outrebounding Whitley County, 37-17.
The Bears also turned in arguably their best defensive performance of the season in limiting Whitley County to just 29 points and 11 made shots. Whitley's output is the fewest by a Harlan County opponent this season, and the least amount scored by the Colonels all year.
“It’s hard to say too much negative when you hold somebody like Whitley County to 29 points. They have played right with Corbin, they beat South Laurel and Knox Central only beat them by three,” Jones said.
By John Middleton
- Local Sports
Lynn Camp, Williamsburg and Whitley County had student-athletes that participated in the Class A and Class 3A State Track and Field Meets on Saturday, but none came up with any team points.
Fear 'Les' 13th Region Diamond Rankings
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Off and Running
The Knox Central Lady Panther track and field team turned in a fifth place finish garnering 30 points in Friday’s Class 2A State Meet, as senior Cassi Shippy stole the show by capturing first place honors in the 100 Meter Dash (12.58) and a second place finish in the Long Jump (17-06.50).
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The Tri-County was represented well once again at the University of Kentucky’s Boone Tennis Center and Shillito Park.
Who Dey Nation should be excited
We’re still a few months away before the start of the NFL regular season, but if you’re a Cincinnati Bengals fan, you’ve got to be excited for things to come.
South, Whitley both grab wins
The game was tied up at 0-0 until the Colonels broke the game open with 10 runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to defeat Barbourville, 10-0.
Jumpers stun North
Both North Laurel and Somerset struggled at the plate for six innings, but that didn’t mean the two teams weren’t going to provide some fireworks during the game’s final inning of play Thursday.
On the move
Mother Nature played a big role during the opening day of the Boys and Girls State Tennis Tournaments. She caused just enough havoc to put a major dent into Thursday’s first and second round schedules.
Lady Colonels drop 12-9 decision at home to Clay County
The Whitley County Lady Colonels found themselves in a slugfest for most of the night against Clay County Thursday.
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- Mixed Results