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Eagles can't finish, fall to Jones 76-72

By By Richard Dark/The Meridian Star
Dec. 12, 2000
ELLISVILLE Meridian Community College and Jones County Junior College haven't played each other in a blue moon and judging by the way things went for the MCC men and women Saturday, it may be much longer than that before it happens again.
Monday night, the moon wasn't blue, it was full and the craziness that transpired inside the JCJC gymnasium provided quality entertainment for the small crowd on hand.
The Bobcat men and women both used big runs late in the contest to hold off the visitors and gain the sweep.
Jones men 76, MCC 72: The Eagles fought hard but fell to 3-10 as they could never gain a substantial lead in the second half and most importantly, couldn't contain the hot shooting of Derrick White and Omar Barlett who finished with 20 and 18, respectively, to lead the Bobcats to a 9-2 mark.
MCC held the slim 7-6 lead in the early going, but Jones responded with a 17-2 run that included four three-pointers, including a pair by Jermaine Sherman, who finished with eight points.
The Eagles managed to battle back and pull to within 34-30 at the end of the first half.
MCC opened the second half with aggressive defense and three-pointers by former MHS standout Sammie Cole, who finished with 23 to forge a 51-all tie with 11:31 left.
From there, it was nip and tuck the rest of the way, before White began heating up again, nailing three in a row to push Jones up by six.
Two straight three-pointers by Cedric Jones and Cole inched MCC to within 62-59 with 5:37 left.
But that's as close as they would get the rest of the way, despite Rocky Lane's 19-point effort.
A runner by Jay Ragan, who finished with eight, saw the lead trimmed to three again with 47 ticks left before JCJC scored five unanswered.
Cedric Drake added 14 points for MCC, who won't play again until Jan. 6.
Jones women 77, MCC 66: Again a hot-shooting start set the tone as the Lady Bobcats improved 11-1 and dropped MCC to 11-3. The Lady Eagles turned a three-point deficit at halftime into a seven-point lead at the 15:00 mark of the game with help from Jones, who committed several key turnovers during the span.
Lady Eagle Tommie Walden nailed a three to give her team a 49-41 lead, and just when it seemed as if MCC was ready to pull away, Lady Bobcat post player Ebony Johnson exploded, single-handedly fueling a huge run with 13 of her 29 points in the pivotal five-minute span.
By the time the Lady Eagles finally got a stop on Johnson, Jones had stormed back to take a seven-point lead with less than six minutes to go. Walden, who finished with 16, hit a pair of free throws to pull MCC to within 59-55, but Johnson kept coming and her teammate, former Quitman standout Tammika Sims added 16 points and 16 rebounds to help hold MCC at bay. Tijwana Collins, who finished with 11, hit a trey to get MCC back to 68-64 at the 2:09 mark before Jones began to sink free throws to build up to the final margin.
Ole Miss signee Catesha Riley chipped in with 14 points and Angela Bullock added 11 boards. Washington each collected eight in the 40-foul affair.
Rani Webb got some garbage stickbacks to have an impressive 10 points, as well.
Richard Dark is a sports writer for the Meridian Star. E-mail him at rdark@themeridianstar.com.

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