Breathitt rallies past Harlan, advances to All ‘A’ state finals


Brendon Miller

Breathitt County freshman guard Austin Sperry sliced past Harlan’s Will Austin and Jaedyn Gist for two of his 26 points in the Bobcats’ 63-61 win in the All “A” Classic state semifinals at Richmond.




The deepest run for a 13th Region team since 2000 ended in heartbreaking fashion Saturday as Harlan fell 63-61 to Breathitt County in the All “A” Classic state semifinals at Eastern Kentucky University.
The Dragons raced to a 10-1 and stayed on top throughout the first half, taking a nine-point advantage into the halftime break.
Breathitt County pulled even going into the fourth period and made several clutch shots down the stretch to earn a spot in the finals opposite 15th Region champ Pikeville. Austin Sperry hit the tying 3-pointer with 2:07 left to pull the Bobcats even at 59. Christian Collins hit one free throw and Bryce Hoskins connected on two to put the Bobcats up by three. Akal cut the deficit to one with a layup with seven seconds left but was unable to get off a shot before the buzzer sounded after Breathitt hit one of two at the line.
Sperry, a freshman guard, scored 26 to lead the 17-4 Bobcats, who were the previous favorite in the 14th Region but had lost to Harlan in the WYMT Mountain Classic earlier this season. Colins and Hoskins added 14 and 11 points, respectively.
Akal led the 15-7 Dragons with 29 points.
Harlan plays host to Bell County on Tuesday. Breathitt County travels to Lee County on Monday and will be at home against Harlan County on Thursday.