|EMCC Lions claim key 85-83 win at Itawamba; Lady Lions fall 77-71 to ICC in North Division action|
FULTON, Miss. – Sophomore point guard Cataurius Taylor connected on two free throws with 4.6 seconds left to give the East Mississippi Lions a key 85-83 road win over Itawamba Monday night at the Davis Event Center. The Lady Indians of ICC claimed a 77-71 win over the EMCC women in the night’s opening contest.
Rebounding from last week’s 85-80 divisional setback at Coahoma, coach Mark White’s 9-5 Lions improved their North Division mark to 2-1 on the year. Losing for just the eighth time in the last two seasons, the Indians fell to 11-4 overall and 2-1 in divisional play in seeing their eight-game winning streak snapped.
Fueled by Starkville freshman Coco Ware’s 16 first-half points, EMCC used a 10-0 run early in the opening period to take a 25-18 lead midway through the half. Finishing the contest hitting 24-of-30 (80%) from the line as a team, in contrast to ICC’s 20-of-33 (61%) free-throw shooting, the Lions connected on 13-of-14 first-half charity tosses en route to taking a 47-37 halftime lead.
The visitors opened up as much as a 15-point lead during the second stanza, but struggled with turnovers on four straight possessions midway through the half. ICC’s Theron Jenkins, a Texas Tech signee, cut the deficit to a single point (81-80) with a pair of free throws at the 1:45 mark. Following an EMCC timeout, the Indians stole the inbounds pass and Gary Dixon converted a 3-pointer to give ICC a brief 83-81 advantage with 1:15 remaining.
With less than 30 seconds left, EMCC’s Taylor drove the length of the floor to knot the contest at 83-83. Following a missed opportunity by ICC to take back the lead, Taylor again drove the lane and was sent to the line for the eventual game-winning free throws with 4.6 seconds left. Malcolm Burton’s potential game-winning 3-pointer banged off the back of the rim to secure the Lions’ two-point road victory.
Ranked 25th nationally in scoring at 20.8 points per game, Ware finished with a game-high 29 points and 10 rebounds to register his second double-double of the season. With five Lions in double figures, sophomore Darian Donald of Columbus added 14 points for the winners. Ware and Donald were each 9-of-9 from the line on the night.
Jenkins paced the Indians with 28 points and nine rebounds, while Burton finished with 14 points off the ICC bench.
Monday’s opening contest featured an early-season battle for first place in the MACJC’s North Division race, as both women’s teams entered the night 2-0 in divisional play on the year. The EMCC women jumped out to an early 17-7 lead, but had the margin trimmed to 39-37 by halftime. The Lady Indians came out strong in the second stanza and mounted as much as a 12-point lead (65-53) late in the contest. The Lady Lions made one last attempt for the upset bid when Kottia White’s 3-pointer cut the deficit to seven points (71-64) with two minutes remaining. After the visitors came up empty on their next two possessions, ICC iced the six-point home win by converting 6-of-8 from the charity stripe down the stretch.
With Meridian freshman Martika Hull leading the way with 16 points and seven rebounds, coach Sharon Thompson’s Lady Lions fell to 10-4 overall and 2-1 in North Division play on the year. With four players scoring in double digits, White of Jackson tallied 13 points, while Starkville’s Sanitra Bush and Georgia State signee Angelique Burtts added 12 and 10 points, respectively. Starkville’s Courtney Cannon topped all scorers with 17 points for the 12-4 Lady Indians, while Jessica Collins contributed 15 points in the winning effort.
The East Mississippi basketball teams return to action next week by hosting divisional foes Mississippi Delta and Holmes on Tuesday and Thursday, respectively, at Keyes T. Currie Coliseum on the Scooba campus. Game times both days are set for 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
|Last Updated ( Tuesday, 13 January 2009 )|
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