|D.J. Evans' 3-pointer lifts Lions to 83-81 home win over No. 17 Northeast; Lady Lions fall 66-57|
SCOOBA – D.J. Evans’ 3-pointer with 12.9 seconds left and Tradarrius McPhearson’s game-saving steal at the buzzer lifted the Lions of East Mississippi Community College to a dramatic 83-81 home triumph over 17th-ranked Northeast Mississippi in MACJC North Division basketball action Tuesday night at EMCC’s Keyes T. Currie Coliseum. The visiting Northeast Lady Tigers claimed the opener with a 66-57 victory over EMCC’s Lady Lions.
In the men’s nightcap, a dozen second-half lead changes and a pair of ties contributed to the championship game-like atmosphere pitting two title-contending ball clubs. Having battled back from an 11-point, first-half deficit, the visiting Tigers owned an 81-78 lead with 32.8 seconds remaining on the game clock. After Evans nailed a pair of free throws six seconds later to pull the Lions to within a point, Northeast subsequently broke EMCC’s press and appeared headed for a 2-on-1 break. However, guard Deonta Herman opted to drive to the basket and EMCC sophomore swing man Deon Bedford tipped the ball out to set up the climactic finish to a classic contest.
Once the Lions established control on the tap out, McPhearson found Evans on the perimeter for the eventual game-winner. Evans, a former Jackson All-Metro selection at Brandon High School, was coming off a season-high, 29-point effort at Meridian last Thursday. But, the sophomore playmaker was held scoreless in the opening half by Northeast and his game-winning trey marked only his second made field goal of the contest. Evans finished the game with nine second-half points along with four assists and four rebounds.
Following Evans’ triple with just under 13 ticks left in regulation, Northeast called its final timeout of the game. The Tigers put the ball into the hands of leading scorer Acie Vance, who was pick-pocketed by McPhearson as the game clock expired. Vance led all scorers with 23 points. Jermaine Hollimon followed with 17 points for the 10-2 Tigers, who fell to 1-2 in division play.
Improving to 10-2 overall and 3-0 within the division with their seventh straight victory, head coach Mark White’s EMCC Lions had seven different players score between nine and 15 points on the night. Sophomore forward Colin Borchert led the way with 15 points despite fouling out with 8:28 remaining in the contest. McPhearson, a sophomore by way of Raymond High School, followed with 14 points to go along with his team-high nine rebounds and five assists. Fellow sophomores Lakin Ford and Bedford added 11 and 10 points, respectively, for the reigning two-time NJCAA Region 23 champions.
In Tuesday’s opener, the home-standing EMCC Lady Lions couldn’t overcome a second-half scoring drought that saw them go nearly 10 minutes between made field goals. After trailing by a single digit (27-26) at the break, East Mississippi’s deficit grew to double digits (45-35) by the 8:07 mark of the second stanza.
Despite their scoring woes, the Lady Lions still trailed by only six points (56-50) with a minute left in the game. With EMCC forced to foul down the stretch, the Lady Tigers hit 10-of-12 charity tosses over the final minute of play to secure the road triumph.
Head coach Sharon Thompson’s EMCC Lady Lions fell to 4-9 overall and 1-2 in division action. The defending MACJC North Division champions were led again by sophomore guard Chadisty Hickman with 18 points, though she was limited to just 6-of-23 shooting from the field. The former Kemper County High School product also totaled six assists, four rebounds and two steals.
Raising their record to 6-7 overall and 2-1 within the division, the Lady Tigers of Northeast received a game-high 22 points from Amber Jackson. Anna Brooke Page and Shunquest Howell added 16 points apiece for the visitors.
The East Mississippi Community College basketball teams will be on the road next week, playing at Mississippi Delta on Monday (Jan. 23) before heading to Fulton to take on Itawamba on Thursday (Jan. 26).
|Last Updated ( Tuesday, 17 January 2012 )|
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