Lady Bears continue win streak with victories over Bell, JFWA


Jeff Phillips

Harlan County senior Leah Taulbee went after a loose ball in a match against Bell County earlier in the season.

By John Henson, Managing Editor

Harlan County extended its win streak to three with a pair of 4-1 victories, on Sept. 11 against Bell County and Sept. 13 against J. Frank White Academy, Tenn.
“We struggled to get woke up Saturday at Bell County. We never really found our rhythm and had a hard time controlling the ball on the turf. We did what we had to do to come out with the win but it wasn’t pretty,” Harlan County coach Troy Gaw said. “COVID reared its heads again for the J. Frank White game. We were down four players, all starters, and once again weren’t able to field a full 11 on the field. I was proud of the way we played several players down. We hustled and found a way to win. Leah Taulbee had the best game that she has ever played and what a time for her to come out. We really needed her.”
Natalie Bolin had three goals in the win over Bell County. Abigail Gaw added one.
Brooklyn Crider recorded nine goal keeper saves.
Taulbee recorded two goals against J. Frank White. AnnaBelle Williams and Gaw had one goal each. Bolin led in assists with two. Crider had one assist and nine goal keeper saves.
Harlan County fell to 3-5 on the season with a 10-0 loss on Tuesday at South Laurel.
“We went up against what I consider the best team in our region this year, at their place, still down four players, so our lineup was a mashup of what we were hoping to do. I picked up a player this week so it helps our numbers but, we were just outmatched,” Gaw said. “Our motto this year is 100 percent effort 100 percent of the time, and the girls lived up to that this game. Our effort was there, experience and missing starters hurt. I’m proud of this team with all the hardships that we have had to overcome this year. It is a great group of young ladies. I’ve told them the next two weeks show who we are as a team so we will see what happens.”
Harlan County will play host to Estill County on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the James A. Cawood field. The Lady Bears will be at home against Knox Central on Sept. 23, travel to Knox Central on Sept. 27 and close the regular season on Sept. 28 at home against Middlesboro.