|EMCC to open week-long hoops home stand Monday with Northeast|
SCOOBA – At the midway point of league play, the East Mississippi basketball teams begin an important week-long home stand by playing host to Northeast Mississippi Monday on the Scooba campus. The EMCC clubs will then tip off the second half of MACJC North Division play at home by welcoming Northwest Mississippi on Thursday.
Both hoops doubleheaders this week will feature women’s games at 5:30 p.m. followed by 7:30 p.m. men’s contests at Keyes T. Currie Coliseum on the Scooba campus.
Continuing to receive votes in the NJCAA Division I men’s basketball poll, head coach Mark White’s 15-3 Lions sit atop the North Division standings with a 4-1 league mark after posting an impressive 87-54 victory at Holmes last Thursday. Reigning division champion Itawamba enters the week ranked second in the standings at 4-2, followed by a three-way tie for third place between Holmes, Mississippi Delta and Northeast Mississippi at 3-2.
Winners of seven of their last eight decisions, the Lions have limited their last eight opponents to an average of just 57.6 points per outing on only 34-percent collective field-goal shooting. In addition, five of EMCC’s seven wins over the last eight games have been by 26 points or more during that stretch.
Individually, the Lions continue to be ignited on offense by preseason NJCAA All-American CoCo Ware, who leads the team in scoring (19.0 ppg), steals (2.9 spg) and made 3-pointers (31). The sophomore standout from Starkville also ranks as EMCC’s No. 2 rebounder (5.8 rpg) and second-leading playmaker (2.3 apg) on the year. With 878 career points to his credit, Ware is averaging 23.1 points an outing over the last eight games, including a career-high 38 points against Marion Military and 32 versus Bevill State.
As a team, the EMCC men are averaging 80.1 points per contest on the season with six different players averaging 7.2 points or better an outing and seven individuals pulling down at least 4.2 rebounds a game. Freshman point guard Deonte Alexander, of Nashville, is the team’s No. 2 scorer on the year at 12.4 points per game, along with topping the Lions in assists (3.6 apg) as the club’s primary playmaker. Freshman Donovan Walker, of Meridian, averages 9.6 points and 4.6 rebounds, while fellow frosh Jonathan King follows with 8.9 points and a team-high 6.3 boards an outing.
Entering the week just above the .500 mark with a 9-8 overall record, head coach Sharon Thompson’s Lady Lions are currently tied for third in the North Division standings with a 3-2 league mark. Itawamba and Northwest begin the week at 5-1 and 4-1, respectively, in division play. Most recently, the EMCC women claimed a 62-47 win at Holmes last Thursday to break a two-game losing skid. The reigning NJCAA Region 23 champions have also knocked off league-leading Itawamba (68-57) and Coahoma (85-50) in division action on the year.
Individually, reigning all-state sophomore forward Martika Hull again paces the Lady Lions in scoring (13.1 ppg), rebounding (8.4 rpg) and field-goal percentage (52.7%) this season. Entering the week with a current streak of four straight double-doubles to her credit, the former Southeast Lauderdale standout has registered seven double-doubles on the year and now has 14 for her 49-game EMCC career.
Freshman point guard Natalie Tate, of Columbus, ranks as the club’s second-leading scorer (12.8 ppg) and No. 2 playmaker (2.5 apg), in addition to leading the EMCC women in steals (2.4 spg) and made 3-pointers (25). Fellow frosh Nashedra Barry, Tate’s former prep teammate at Columbus High School, averages 7.3 points and 4.8 rebounds an outing. Another first-year player from nearby Noxubee County High School, Shanteria “Honey Bun” Tate leads the team in assists (3.0 apg), while also contributing 6.9 points, 4.6 boards and 1.7 steals per contest.
|Last Updated ( Sunday, 24 January 2010 )|
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