FRANKFORT — Harlan controlled the tempo. Frankfort missed free throws.
Those two issues added up to a 67-50 win for Harlan on Friday morning in the quarterfinals of the Kentucky All “A” Classic at the Frankfort Convention Center.
Harlan (20-3) will play Owensboro Catholic in the semifinals Saturday at noon.
“Most of the first half they controlled the tempo,” Frankfort coach Deron Norman said. “We sped up a little bit at the end of the second quarter. We were in the high 20s, and we wanted to be around 30.”
The two teams were tied at 26-26 at halftime, with Harlan point guard Jordan Brock scoring 25 of her game-high 39 points in the first half.
The Lady Dragons, leading 37-33 midway through the third quarter, ended the period on a 10-1 run to lead 47-34 going into the fourth quarter.
Harlan steadily increased its advantage in the final period. The Lady Dragons’ largest lead was 21 points, 65-44, with 2:09 left in the game.
“Jordan did a good job handling the basketball,” Harlan coach Derrick Akal said. “Earlier in the game we struggled offensively, but I thought our defense bailed us out at first.
“It’s all those other things that kept us in that game. I thought we rebounded the ball well, kept them off the boards. We defended well, we passed the ball and she kept us around in that first half. In the second half, I thought all the girls contributed. I was proud of every last one of them. Obviously you’ve got to do your job and I think every girl did her job today.”
Frankfort shot 52.6 percent in the first half and 24 percent in the second while Harlan improved from 40 percent shooting in the first half to 65 percent in the second.
“I think the biggest thing is we missed way too many free throws,” said Norman, whose team went 17-for-32 from the line. “We missed 15 free throws in this game, and we don’t do that.”
Norman said nerves were a factor at the foul line.
“Some of that is nerves, and we have to work on that,” he said. “You need to develop a habit. Nerves are there. When it’s a big game, a big crowd and every shot matters, you have to go through a routine (at the line), and we don’t do that very well.”
BriAnna Burbridge, who scored a single-game tournament record of 48 points in Wednesday’s opening round win against Menifee County, led FHS with 21 points.
“We wanted to keep her out of the lane,” Akal said of Burbridge. “From watching her play Wednesday, one thing she did well was in transition she got to the basket anytime she felt like it.
“So we wanted to get back and build a wall and just make it tough for her to score. She scored some tough buckets the ones that she did get. And I thought if we did that we could dictate the pace.”
Turpin was in double figures for FHS with 14 points, and Brooklyn Massingill followed Brock in scoring with 13 points for Harlan.
Brock went 16-for-23 from the field and hit three 3-pointers in scoring her 39 points.
“The only thing that disappointed me is we didn’t help as much on her as we needed to,” Norman said of his team’s defense on Brock. “She’s a great player. You’re not going to stop a great player, but you have to try and contain them.
“We left Ellen (Williams) and Shay (Washington) on her a long time by themselves, and we couldn’t do that.”
Frankfort (10-10) plays its next game Feb. 6 at home against South Oldham.