An Enterprise Staff Report
Harlan County’s second victory over Somerset wasn’t nearly as competitive as the first. After holding off the Lady Jumpers by four points just two nights earlier, the Lady Bears led by 20 heading into the final period Sunday before cruising to a 48-39 victory to capture the Candy Cane Classic Championship.
Somerset shot only 25 percent (nine of 36) from the field and had no baskets in the decisive third quarter as Harlan County extended a nine-point halftime lead to 20 going into the fourth quarter.
“I think we frustrated them by switching our defenses from two nights ago,” Harlan County coach Anthony Nolan said. They guessed and tried to figure out what we were in the first quarter and a half. We played well defensively, and I thought we controlled the backboards. We controlled the tempo of the game. We didn’t execute that well offensively, but they are pretty good defensively. They are long, lanky and fast.”
Freshman guard Brooklyn Massingill led the HCHS offense, hitting five 3-pointers in a 20-point effort. Junior point guard Kaitlyn Stittums hit four of five shots as she scored nine points. Senior center Sarah Evans didn’t miss any shots as she scored eight.
Somerset (5-8) was led by Virginia Scott with 16 points.
Harlan County improved to 15-1, passing the halfway point of the regular season with one of the state’s best records.
“I’m really pleased with where we’re at,” Nolan said. “There are a lot of things we need to do better, but I guess a coach always thinks like that. I’ll be happy as long as we keep progressing. I think the girls are getting more comfortable with each other. We’ll face some adversity in January, and I want to see how we handle that.”
Harlan County will travel to Harlan on Thursday for the first game of a girls/boys doubleheader.
HARLAN COUNTY (48) — Kaitlyn Stittums 9, Lauren Lee 3, Brooklyn Massingill 20, Bella Noe 0, Sarah Evans 8, Keisha Mimes 5, Madison Cornett 2, Bridgette Bennett 0, Lauren Smith 1, McKenzie Farley 0, Lindsay Branson 0, Becky Freeman 0, Kaitlin Evans 0, Leah Evans 0.
SOMERSET (39) — Bethany Edwards 3, Miranda Mills 4, Erica Ford 7, Virginia Scott 16, Madison Brooks 6, Jessica Wallace 0, Tapassa Brown 2, Kaitlyn Johnson 1, Ariel McGinnis 0.
The final day of the Candy Cane Classic was one the Harlan Lady Dragons will try to quickly forget.
The Lady Dragons’ offensive woes continued as they fell 62-35 to Upperman, Tenn. — a team they beat by nine in the opening day of the tournament.
Harlan (6-7) was still in the game at halftime, trailing by 13, but the Lady Dragons didn’t score the first seven minutes of the third quarter. Harlan missed its first 14 shots in the half as Upperman blew the game open with a 14-0 run.
Upperman hurt the Lady Dragons with 3-pointers, hitting 10 of 22 in the game, led by guard Klaudia Hall with five in a 23-point effort.
Harlan took almost half of its shots from beyond the 3-point line for the second straight day and struggled again, hitting six of 22. Jourdan Ledford and Shanae Thomas each scored eight points to lead the Lady Dragons.
The Lady Dragons will play host to Harlan County on Thursday in a girls/boys doubleheader.
HARLAN (35) — Jordan Brock 0, Torri Mitchell 2, Jourdan Ledford 8, Masie Charles 0, Emma Bianchi 0, Shanae Thomas 8, Kelly Cox 6, Kaitlin Jenkins 0, Katie King 0, Mackenzie King 2, Callie Wilson 3, Jesse Cochran 3, Madelynn Henson 3.
UPPERMAN, TENN. (62) — Sarah Eldridge 0, Kristen Hull 6, Klaudia Hull 23, Kenzie Martin 7, Kat Carter 8, Lindsay Hull 4, Brooke Farris 3, Ashlyn Medley 5, Kailee Bryant 3, Abby Allison 3.