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MCC falls in opener

By Staff
SCRAMBLING n Pearl River's Mindy Ladner (24) scrambles on the floor as MCC's Teasha McFarland grabs a loose-ball rebound Tuesday during the Lady Eagles' loss in the opening round of the Region 23 basketball tournament. Photo by Paula Merritt/The Meridian Star
By Fredie Carmichael/Special to The Star
March 7, 2001
Stunned. That's the best way to describe the reaction of the Meridian Community College women's basketball team and the crowd following the Region 23 opening-round game at Mississippi College Tuesday afternoon.
In the evening's other game, the East Central Community College Lady Warriors knocked off MACJC state champion Jones Junior College 93-78.
The MCC Lady Eagles' great season ended on a sour note as the Lady Wildcats of Pearl River served as the spoilers shocking coach Hilary Allen's squad 75-74.
The game looked to be another MCC blow-out at the beginning of the second half as the Lady Eagles took a 55-39 lead with 17:24 left on a three-point play by Angela Bullock. Bullock scored seven of the first nine MCC points to start the second half and appeared to once again be the spark that the Lady Eagles needed to put the game away.
But the Lady Eagles went ice cold from the field and Pearl River took its first lead since an early 3-2 advantage at 63-62 with 7:21 left in the game.
It was a see-saw affair from there on as both teams answered shot for shot. Pearl River had the ball with 5.6 seconds left trailing by one as Lori DeSilvey hit a fade-away jump shot in the corner giving the Lady Wildcats the upset victory.
MCC ended the season with 26-5 record and Miss-Lou conference title.
Catesha Riley led MCC with 16 points followed by Bullock with 15, Teasha McFarland 13, Tommie Walden 11, and Felicia Washington with 10.
Pearl River's Brandi Ladner had a game-high 23.
ECCC women 93, JCJC 78: The Lady Warriors of ECCC won their third straight game against the Lady Bobcats of Jones, and advanced to the semi-finals of the Region 23 tournament thanks to the 93-78 whipping at Mississippi College.
ECCC never trailed and held off every charge Jones mounted in the second half to claim the victory.
The Lady Warriors rushed out to an early 11-5 lead with 14:32 left in the first half on a three-pointer in the corner by Sophia Reed. But that lead wouldn't last long as Tammika Sims drove the lane, made the lay-up and was hacked on the arm in the process. Her free throw that followed completed the three-point play and Jones cut it to 13-12 with 13:54 remaining in the half.
ECCC tried to get some breathing room as Nicole Cox made an acrobatic fadeaway put back at the 9:33 mark to put the Lady Warriors up 23-17. Jones fought back and scored the next four points on the interior and was only down by two.
The Lady Warriors used a 10-3 run to end the half and led 41-33 at the intermission.
Jones quickly pulled to within three early in the second half before Margo Porter drilled a clutch trey that put ECCC up 46-40 with 17:01 left in the game.
The Lady Bobcats then used solid play in the post to battle back to within 46-48 on a tough jumper in the lane by Ebony Johnson with 15:14 left.
East Central took over the game from there, mounting a game-altering 19-6 run and led 67-52 after a turn around bank shot from Porter with 7:33 left in the contest. The Lady Warriors never allowed Jones to get back in the ball game as they took the victory and advance to face the winner of the Copiah-Lincoln, Northeast CC game.
Porter led the way for the Lady Warriors with 23 points, followed by Alberta Norman's 18. Anna Udicova had 14 and Nikkie Lacour and Nicole Cox chipped in with 12 apiece. Sims' game-high 31 paced the Lady Bobcats.