PIKEVILLE – Betsy Layne fell to tournament favorite Shelby Valley in the semifinals of the 15th Region Girls’ Basketball Tournament. Shelby Valley prevented Betsy Layne from pulling off an upset in a second round matchup, recovering from a slow start to beat the Lady Cats 65-43 at the East Kentucky Expo Center on Friday night.
With the loss, Betsy Layne ended its season 16-16.
Shelby Valley improved to 27-3 and advanced to the 15th Region title game with the win.
Less than two years removed from capturing a 15th Region championship, Shelby Valley shot 41.8 percent (23-of-55) from the field. The Lady Kats were only 3-of-18 beyond the arc, shooting 16.7 percent from 3-point range.
Shelby Valley, however, shot 84.2 percent (16-of-19) from the free throw line.
Lakyn Mullins paced Shelby Valley with a game-high 24 points and a game-best 11 rebounds.
Accompanying Mullins in double figures in the Shelby Valley scoring column, Cassidi Wright posted 14 points and Summer Rose contributed 12 points.
Narrowly missing double figures, Kyleigh Tackett tallied nine points for the Lady Kats.
Betsy Layne controlled the contest early, outscoring Shelby Valley 19-12 in the first quarter. But Shelby Valley fared better in the second quarter, outscoring the Ladycats 13-6 to tie the game 25-25.
Determined Shelby Valley managed to carry momentum over in into the second half, outscoring Betsy Layne 21-11 in the third quarter.
Finishing strong, Shelby Valley outscored the Ladycats 19-7 in the final quarter.
Kayla Newsom chipped in six points for Shelby Valley, which claimed its 10th straight win.
Betsy Layne shot 48.5 percent (16-of-33) from the field. The Ladycats were 2-of-3 from 3-point range.
Betsy Layne shot 64.3 percent (9-of-14) from the free throw line.
Katie Tackett led Betsy Layne with a team-high 13 points. Joining Tackett in double figures for the Ladycats, Megan Frazier scored 10 points.
Destiny Compton contributed eight points and Emily Kidd chipped in six points for the Ladycats.
Rounding out the Betsy Layne individual scoring, Jordan Adkins and Kaitlin Kidd scored three points apiece.
The Ladycats committed 23 turnovers in the season-ending loss.
Shelby Valley moved on to meet Magoffin County in the 15th Region title game.
Steve LeMaster is the editor of The Floyd County Times. He can be reached at (606) 886-8506.