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Lady Bears wrangle district win Thursday

By Paul Lunsford
Contributing writer

Harlan County and Harlan combined for 114 field goal attempts, 87 free throw attempts and 94 rebounds, but it was the Lady Bears’ fourth-quarter outburst that allowed HC to win 53-45 in a district showdown on Thursday at Harlan.

The game was tied at 31-31 entering the fourth quarter.

Eighth-grade guard Kylie Jones hit two free throws and added a basket to put Harlan County ahead for good at 35-32 with seven minutes to play in the game.

The Lady Bears used a 7-1 spurt to stretch the lead to 42-33 following five points from Jacey Lewis.

Kassy Owens hit two free throws at the 1:56 mark to make it 47-37.

Harlan County hit five of eight free throws in the final 44 seconds to seal the victory. Karst and Smith hit two free throws each.

“The kids get so wrapped up in the rivalry and it was wild,” said Harlan County coach Anthony Nolan. “When we settled down in the second half and executed, that’s the way it should look.”

The Lady Bears were led in scoring by Jacey Lewis, a senior guard, with 14 points. Junior guard Jaylin Smith added 11 points. Ella Karst followed with nine points. Jones and Owens tossed in eight and seven points, respectively.

Harlan County shot 25 percent (13-of-52) from the field. The Lady Dragons shot 16 percent (10-of-62) from the field. HC hit 24 of 48 free throws while Harlan connected on 21 of 39. The Lady Bears had 25 turnovers compared to Harlan’s 28.

“We didn’t shoot well. I think the stats show that,” said Harlan coach Tiffany Hamm.
Freshman guard/forward Aymanni Wynn led Harlan with 15 points and 14 rebounds. Angel Wynn scored eight points. Faith Hoskins had seven. Emma Owens finished with six points.

Both teams struggled in the first quarter. Four points by Owens and a 3-pointer by Angel Wynn gave the Lady Dragons an 8-6 lead after one period.

Harlan County missed 10 of 12 shots from the field in the opening quarter. The Lady Dragons were just one of nine, but hit five of 10 free throws.

Both teams committed 11 turnovers each in the first eight minutes.

Harlan led most of the second quarter. The game was tied three times in the period.

Angel Wynn’s 3-pointer gave the Lady Dragons an 18-15 lead at the 2:02 mark. A free throw by Aymanni Wynn and a put back by Kylie Noe put Harlan ahead 21-16.

A put back by Taylor Lunsford, two free throws by Jones and another from Ella Karst tied the game at 21-all at halftime.

Both teams scored 10 points each in the third quarter. A basket by Karst with 1:25 remaining in the quarter allowed Harlan County to take a 29-23 advantage.

A 3-pointer by Faith Hoskins, baskets by Angel Wynn and Amyanni Wynn and a free throw from Peighton Jones tied the game after the third quarter.

“This was a tough road win,” said Nolan. “Harlan plays hard. Any time you get a district win on the road, it’s big.”

Harlan County (3-3 overall, 2-1 district) returns to action Saturday at home against Knott Central at 6:30 p.m.

The Lady Bears will travel to Perry Central on Monday before playing host to Middlesboro on Friday in the first game of a girls/boys doubleheader.

Harlan (0-4, 0-2) play host to Leslie County (3-2) on Saturday, Hazard on Tuesday and Letcher Central on Thursday.

HARLAN COUNTY (3-3)
Ella Karst 2-17 5-13 9, Jacey Lewis 4-11 3-4 14, Kassy Owens 2-6 3-8 7, Jaylin Smith 1-4 9-16 11, Kelly Beth Hoskins 0-5 0-1 0, Taylor Lunsford 2-2 0-2 4, Kylie Jones 2-7 4-4 8, Taytum Griffith 0-0 0-0 0, Paige Phillips 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 13-52 24-48 53.

HARLAN (0-4)
Angel Wynn 3-13 0-0 8, Emma Owens 0-16 6-14 6, Peighton Jones 0-4 1-2 1, Aymanni Wynn 4-16 6-12 15, Alli Thompson 0-3 1-2 1, Faith Hoskins 2-4 2-3 7, Kylie Noe 1-4 0-0 2, Scarlett Rowe 0-2 5-6 5, Abbi Fields 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 10-62 21-39 45.

Harlan County 6 15 10 22 – 53
Harlan 8 13 10 14 – 45
3-Point goals: Harlan County 3-17 (Lewis 3-6, Owens 0-1, Hoskins 0-4, Karst 0-6), Harlan 4-15 (Angel Wynn 2-8, Hoskins 1-1, Aymanni Wynn 1-2, Rowe 0-1, Owens 0-3). Rebounds: Harlan County 44 (Owens 15, Lunsford 9, Smith 7, Hoskins 5, Karst 3, Jones 2, Phillips 2, Lewis 1), Harlan 50 (Aymanni Wynn 14, Jones 10, Noe 7, Thompson 5, Angel Wynn 4, Hoskins 4, Owens 3, Rowe 3). Assists: Harlan County 7 (Karst 3), Harlan 3 (Thompson 2). Turnovers: Harlan County 25, Harlan 28. Fouled out: Harlan County (Hoskins, Owens), Harlan (Noe, Owens, Thompson, Aymanni Wynn).