By Denis House
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
The boys’ and girls’ 13th Region basketball tournaments started Monday night at Harlan County High School with boys’ action tipping off first.
The first upset of the tournament took place Monday night as Corbin, the team with the best record coming into the region, fell to Middlesboro, 86-80.
The Redhounds built a 24-8 lead after the first quarter, and led 35-28 at the half. Middlesboro outscored Corbin in the third quarter, 29-14, to take a 57-49 lead heading into the final quarter of action.
Both teams battled back and forth in the fourth, with Corbin outscoring Middlesboro, 31-29, but it wasn’t enough, as the Yellowjackets advanced to the semifinals with the 86-80 win.
Five Middlesboro players scored in double figures, led by Blake Davis with 22. Donnie Foister added 20, Austin Poindexter, 18, Michael Wilson, 12, and Zach Riddle, 11.
Corbin was led by Trevor Hill’s 17. Hunter Grubb added 13, Kaleb Maguet, 12, and Robbie Igo, 11.
Monday’s nightcap wasn’t as dramatic as Clay County rolled over Barbourville, 91-64, in the battle of the Tigers.
Tyler McDaniel led the Tigers with 27 points. Kody Reed added 18, Matry Bowling, 16, Stephon Lyttle, 13, and Jarrod Rice, 10.
Devin Mills led all scorers with 33 for Barbourville in a losing effort. Alexander Phipps was the only other Tiger in double figures with 11.
Tuesday night the first game featured the host Harlan County (23-7), winners of the 52nd District, battling South Laurel (13-16), runner-up of the 50th District. The Black Beats beat the Cardinals this season, 44-32. That game was followed by Knox Central (17-13), the winner of the 51st District, taking on defending region champion North Laurel (15-15), the runner-up of the 49th District. These two teams met in the regular season finale with the Jaguars winning over the Panthers, 63-47.
Those games were played after deadline and will be in Friday’s paper. (Editor's note: South Laurel lost to Harlan County, 50-48, while North Laurel nipped Knox Central, 49-47).
The semifinals will be Friday at 6:15 and 7:45 p.m., with the finals set for Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
The girls’ tournament starts on Wednesday with the winners from the 49th District and defending region champion Clay County (26-5), taking on the runner-up from the 50th District, Whitley County,(19-10) at 6:15 p.m. The Lady Colonels upset the Lady Tigers, 58-55, earlier this season. That game will be followed by Bell County (25-5), winner of the 52nd District, meeting Lynn Camp (23-9), runner-up from the 51st District, at 7:45 p.m. These two teams did not play each other in the regular season.
Thursday night Barbourville, (21-10), the winner from the 51st District, will take on Harlan County, (25-6) runner-up of the 52nd District, in the first game, followed by the 50th District winner, Corbin (24-8), battling the 49th District runner-up, North Laurel (6-25). Barbourville lost to Harlan County, 54-40, during the regular season, while Corbin downed North Laurel, 62-22.
The semifinals are scheduled for Saturday at 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m., with the championship game slated for Monday, March 4 at 7 p.m.