Jessica Dean shoots over Corbin's Kelci Jones.

CORBIN—It’s taken Jessica Dean a few games to get accustomed to her role as point guard for the South Laurel Lady Cardinals.

Monday night she showcased her skills against Corbin, scoring 22 points and making several nice passes to help lead South Laurel to a 61-47 win over the Lady Redhounds.

“Jessica was a big reason we won tonight,” coach Konnie Snyder said. “She scored and handled the ball. She really improved managing the game.”

While Snyder was happy to go on the road and pick up a big 50th District win, she wasn’t too thrilled with the way her team played, especially in the second half.

“We didn’t take care of the ball,” Snyder said. “I felt like we didn’t handle the situation well. Hopefully we can learn from this and make us a better team.”

The Lady Cards (3-1, 2-0) never trailed in the contest, and the game was tied only once (4-4). Corbin falls to 2-2 and 1-1.

Dean’s play helped South Laurel hold a 21-16 lead at the end of the first quarter, as she scored nine points, including draining a three with 3:24 left to put her team up, 12-6. Erika Burchett also hit a three in the quarter.

South Laurel continued to hold its lead throughout the second quarter, but the Lady Redhounds refused to go away, thanks in part to the play of Kelci Jones, who scored seven of her 14 points in the quarter.

A basket by Macy Clontz gave South a 27-21 lead at the 4:25 mark, but Lyndsay Champlin drained a three to cut the lead to 27-24.

A Jones basket pulled Corbin to within one (27-26) before Morgan Johnson grabbed an offensive rebound on the other end and scored, pushing the lead back to three, 29-26. South dominated on the offensive boards, but Snyder out that her team missed too many shots.

“We rebounded well, especially in the first half,” Snyder said. “The reason we were rebounding well is because we were missing shots.” South Laurel led 31-27 at the half.

A basket and free throw from Jones at the start of the third cut South’s lead to one, 31-30, but Dean responded on the other end to keep her team up by three.

Leading 33-32, the Lady Cards then went on a 12-4 run to end the quarter and hold a 45-36 lead going into the fourth quarter.

When Corbin cut the lead to 40-36, Kendra Davidson knocked down a three, and Clontz followed with a basket for the nine-point margin.

“That three was huge,” Snyder said of Davidson’s trey. “Kendra also did a good job of stepping into the passing lane and making a couple of steals.”

Corbin cut the lead down to four (47-43) with 5:44 left, but South Laurel ended the game with a 14-4 run to make the final 61-47. Dean had another three in that run.

Corbin struggled from the field in the second half, hitting only 5-of-29 shots.

“I’m happy with how aggressive we played, but we have to learn to slow down and put the ball in the basket,” Snyder said. “This wins means something now, but in the long run, you’ve still got to perform come tournament time.”

South Laurel will now take on Presentation Friday at 6 p.m. in the Berea Holiday Tournament.

Denis House can be reached at

South Laurel 61, Corbin 47

South Laurel 21 10 14 16—61

Corbin 16 11 9 11—47

South Laurel (61)—Justice 5, Dean 22, Anders 2, Johnson 12, Burchett 7, Davidson 9, Clontz 4.

Corbin (47)—Champlin 14, Igo 10, Jones 14, Roaden 3, Smith 6.

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