BARBOURVILLE — The run-and-gun Lady Tigers used a barrage of 3-pointers to sink the Pineville Lady Lions 91-62 in the first round of the 51st District Tournament at Knox Central on Monday.
Barbourville pushed the ball up the court at every opportunity and hoisted up long range bombs before the Lady Lions could get set up in their half-court defense. They hit 14 treys in the game and got off to a quick start by hitting six in the first quarter as they opened up a 30-13 lead.
“We have been playing rough since the All ‘A’ tournament. This has really been a rocky season and we’ve been through some ups and downs. Tonight was rough,” Pineville coach Brenda Gambrel said. “I knew they had outside shooters and we worked on that, but we broke down defensively.”
Senior Devin Enix put on show in her final game for the Lady Lions. She poured in 29 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, but Pineville just couldn’t overcome the Lady Tigers’ shooting.
Amber Mills hit five 3s and scored all 23 of her points in the first half. Kara Erslan hit four 3s and also finished the game with 23 points. Barbourville also got 19 points from Kelsey Erslan and Laken Woolum hit four 3s for 12 points.
Mills, Kara Erslan and Woolum hit two 3s apiece in the first quarter and Mills put in 12 points in the period as they built that 17-point lead. Enix scored seven of her points in the first, Jillian Enix added four and Erica Gambrell also scored a basket.
Devin Enix put in seven more points in the second quarter, Rachel Barnes scored five while Gambrell and Emily Mullins added two apiece. But Barbourville’s shooting didn’t slow down. Mills hit three more shots from long distance in the second quarter and by halftime the Lady Tiger lead was 52-29.
While Barbourville slowed the pace down somewhat in the second half, they continued to be dialed in from beyond the arc. Woolum hit two 3s, Kara and Kelsey Erslan added one each and they all scored six points in the third quarter. Pineville got two 3s from Devin Enix and one from Mullins, Jillian Enix added a basket and Gambrell hit three free throws, but the Lady Lions were still down 72-43 after three.
Devin Enix scored nine points in the fourth quarter, but Pineville wouldn’t get closer than 22 points. Barbourville went on to the 29-point win.
“Devin, our senior, played a phenomenal game. I just left her in because it was her last game with us. She’s had a wonderful career here at Pineville and she’s been a great leader for our team,” Gambrel added. “We really played a pretty good game offensively. Erica Gambrell and Emily Mullins were also able to hit some shots and get into the paint some. A few of the other girls contributed. Usually when you score 60 points you feel like you’ll have a chance to be in the game. That just wasn’t the case in this one.”
Gambrell finished with 10 points for the Lady Lions while Mullins scored eight, Barnes seven and Jillian Enix six.
Barbourville (15-12) advances to play Lynn Camp in the 51st District championship game on Thursday at 7 p.m. at Knox Central. The other first round game was played at the opposite end of the scoring spectrum as the Lady Wildcats got past the host Lady Panthers 35-26.
Pineville ends the season with a record of 10-16. Gambrel took over for Matt Shafer just one game into the season and led the Lady Lions to a surprising run to the finals of the 13th Region All “A” Classic where they took Harlan down to the wire in a 68-66 loss. But Pineville couldn’t carry any momentum from that showing and wound up closing the season with eight straight losses.
“On the positive side we are losing only one senior,” Gambrel said. “This year I’ll be able to start with them in the summer. We’re going to work hard and when the season rolls around again we’ll be ready.”
— — —
PINEVILLE (62) — Devin Enix 29, Erica Gambrell 10, Emily Mullins 8, Rachel Barnes 7, Jillian Enix 6, Sophia Knuckles 0, Sarah Combs 0, Makayla Keyes 0, Autumn Short 0, Brooke Sanders 2, Sam Brock 0, Makenzie Fuson 0.
BARBOURVILLE (91) —Amber Mills 23, Kara Erslan 23, Kelsey Erslan 19, Laken Woolum 12, KK Liford 7, Anna Daniels 5, Whitney Brown 2, Peyton Erslan 0, Natasha Helton 0, Faith Hinkle 0.