Harlan County kept a pair of impressive streaks going Thursday. The Lady Bears improved to 3-0 in district play and earned their fifth consecutive win with a 25-11, 27-25 victory at Harlan.
“I am real excited about the win and happy for the girls,” said Harlan County coach Donna Vicini. “We just want to work hard all year and continue to improve.”
Harlan County controlled the first set on its way to a 14-point win.
Harlan trailed just 14-11 midway through the opening game before Harlan County closed on an 11-0 run. Brittany Clem and Whitney Stevens powered the surge. Clem recorded four aces at serve, while Stevens earned four points at the net.
The Lady Dragons were much more competitive in the second set.
Harlan County appeared to be in control, leading 22-15 late in the game. However, Harlan responded with seven of the next eight points to tie it at 22. Dominique Dupar provided the spark for the Lady Dragons. Dupar recorded three straight points, and Jesse Cochran followed with two tips as the deficit was reduced to two. Shanae Thomas then scored on a kill and Dupar added an ace to pull Harlan even.
“Dominique has good play at the net, and we needed her serve tonight,” said Harlan coach Tara Posey. “I am real proud of how they all played. We came together and didn’t quit. They finished strong.”
The two teams traded points before Harlan County pulled away. Stevens delivered a kill to give the Lady Bears a 26-25 lead. A Harlan return was out on the ensuing point as Harlan County held on for the win.
“The girls played well. They got off to a slow start, but when it was time to come back they came back,” Vicini said.
Stevens and Sophomore Katelyn Reynolds played huge roles at the net for the Lady Bears. Stevens recorded three kills, one spike, four aces, three points and three tips in the two sets. Reynolds finished with six kills, eight points and four tips.
The Lady Dragons knocked off Harlan County 21-7, 21-15 in the junior varsity contest and claimed a 24-22, 23-21 victory in the freshman match.
Harlan (3-12 overall, 2-3 district) returns to action Monday at home against Hazard. Harlan County (9-5 overall, 3-0 district) will travel to Whitley County on Tuesday.