An Enterprise Staff Report
The Harlan County Lady Bears quickly erased memories of their first loss of the season with a 57-39 rout of Buckhorn to capture third-place in the Smoky Mountain Classic on Saturday.
Harlan County jumped out to a 19-7 lead after the first quarter and was never seriously threatened from that point as coach Anthony Nolan substituted regularly.
“It’s hard to keep your rhythm when you sub as much as I did in this one, but we’ve been here three days and I wanted to reward the kids as much as possible,” Nolan said. “We played really well in stretches, but we were lazy in stretches, too. We saw them in preseason, and I knew we would have trouble keeping them focused for this one.
Freshman Brooklyn Massingill paced the Lady Bears with 16 points in the win. Senior Madison Cornett turned in one of her best performances of the season with 11 points in her first start of the season.
The lead was still at 10 late in the third quarter before Massingill, Lee and Noe had consecutive baskets in an 8-0 run to push the score to 42-26 heading into the final quarter.
Harlan County scored the first 11 points of the fourth quarter behind Massingill, Evans and Cornett to build the lead to 53-26 before Nolan went to his reserves again.
Harlan County (11-1) returns to action Thursday in the Candy Cane Classic at South Laurel.
Harlan County 19 11 12 15 — 57
Buckhorn 7 12 7 13 — 39
Harlan County (57) — Kaitlyn Stittums 4, Lauren Lee 8, Brooklyn Massingill 16, Madison Cornett 11, Sarah Evans 5, Bella Noe 6, Keisha Mimes 5, Shauntae Lewis 0, Bridgette Bennett 2, Kaitlin Evans 0, Lauren Smith 0, Becky Freeman 0, Lindsay Branson 0, McKenzie Farley 0, Leah Evans 0.
Buckhorn (39) — Hannah Gabbard 4, Madison Couch 2, Natalie Gabbard 7, Alex Noble 2, Kansas RIce 8, Lavaughn Henson 14, Autumn Neace 2.