It will be a doubleheader pitting Harlan County against Laurel County in the girls 13th Region Tournament semifinals on Friday evening at the Corbin Arena.
Harlan (25-4), the regional favorite all season after back-to-back runner up finishes, advanced with a 57-35 win over Knox Central on Monday in the first round. North Laurel (23-9), ranked second most of the year, defeated Corbin in the opening game of the tournament and will play Harlan in the opening semifinal game at 6:30 p.m.
The Lady Dragons defeated North Laurel 46-43 on Dec. 3 in London in the opening game of the season for Harlan.
Harlan County (22-8) moved to the semifinals for the first time since 2013 with a 35-30 win Tuesday over Clay County. The Lady Bears will play South Laurel (16-16) on Friday at 8 p.m. South advanced with a 59-43 win over Pineville.
The Lady Bears defeated South Laurel 58-52 on Dec. 12 in London in the only meeting between the two teams this year.
The two winners Friday will play Saturday at 7:30 p.m. for the regional title. The 13th Region champ will play the 3rd Region winner next Thursday in the Sweet 16 at at Northern Kentucky University.
The boys tournament opened Wednesday night with 51st District champion Knox Central upsetting North Laurel 71-69 in three overtimes. South Laurel, the highest ranked team in the region most of the season and the champion of the 50th District, played 52nd District runner up Bell County at 8 p.m.
Harlan County, the champions of the 52nd District, will play Corbin on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Corbin handed Harlan County its only 13th Region loss, 57-55, in January at Corbin. Clay County, champions of the 49th District, will play 51st District runner up Barbourville at 8 p.m. in the final game of the first round.
The semifinals are set for Saturday at 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m., with the championship game scheduled Monday at 7:30 p.m. The 13th Region champ will play the winner of the 2nd Region in the state tournament at Rupp Arena in Lexington.
Reach John Henson at 606-909-4134