|No. 22 EMCC tops visiting Northwest 65-57; Lady Lions fall 53-47|
SCOOBA – The 22nd-ranked East Mississippi Lions maintained their MACJC North Division lead by claiming a 65-57 home victory over visiting Northwest Mississippi Thursday night at Keyes T. Currie Coliseum on the Scooba campus. The Lady Lions dropped a 53-47 decision to the Northwest women in Thursday’s opener.
Winners of nine of their last 10 decisions, head coach Mark White’s 17-3 Lions have matched last year’s EMCC win total (17-11 record in 2008-09) with five regular-season games remaining. With a league-leading 6-1 mark in North Division play, the Lions have now held each of their last 10 opponents to 64 points or less.
Following four lead changes and four ties in Thursday’s opening half of play, the EMCC men broke open four-point contest with a 14-4 run early in the second stanza. The Lions held onto their double-digit margin for most of the remaining 10 minutes of play before settling with the eight-point win.
Preseason NJCAA All-American CoCo Ware, of Starkville, and Nashville freshman playmaker Deonte Alexander led East Mississippi with 14 points apiece. Fellow freshmen Jonathan King and Donovan Walker added nine and eight points, respectively, for the winners.
The visiting Rangers of Northwest, now 9-10 overall and 2-5 within divisional play, were led by Justin Gillard’s game-high 15 points. Rico Key followed with 13 points for the visitors.
In Thursday’s opening contest, head coach Sharon Thompson’s 10-9 Lady Lions, now 4-3 in league action, battled from behind most of the evening and had a chance to knot the score during the final minute of play. Down by eight points (50-42) with 3:13 remaining, the EMCC women scored five unanswered points to cut the deficit to three (50-47) with 1:23 left.
However, Lady Lion freshman guard Natalie Tate couldn’t find the mark from three-point range on successive possessions. Despite EMCC misfiring on the pair of potential game-tying 3-pointers down the stretch, the contest remained a one-possession game because of back-to-back Northwest miscues. With less than 20 seconds left and the Lady Lions still looking to tie up the game, Raona Stowers’ pass was picked off by the Lady Rangers’ Tamara Wadlington, who found Hope Adams under the basket for the game-clinching, three-point play. Adams finished the night with a game-best 16 points despite picking up her fourth foul midway through the second half.
Entering the game with a string of five consecutive double-doubles, EMCC sophomore forward Martika Hull topped the Lady Lions with 13 points but could only manage five rebounds on the night. Shanteria Tate and Stowers added eight and seven points, respectively, for the home team.
Improving to 9-5 overall on the season and 6-1 in league play, the visiting Lady Rangers also had Shayla McKinney in double figures with 10 points.
The East Mississippi basketball teams continue divisional competition with a pair of road doubleheaders this coming week. After traveling to Coahoma for a Monday twinbill, the EMCC squads head to Fulton to take on rival Itawamba Thursday evening
|Last Updated ( Friday, 29 January 2010 )|
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