Meridian Star

Sports

February 28, 2014

Lady Bobcats capture MACJC title

FULTON — Caitlyn Spane's 3-point play off an offensive rebound with 6.8 seconds left lifted the Jones County Junior College Lady Bobcats to a dramatic, 75-73 victory over the Southwest Mississippi Community College Lady Bears Thursday night in the championship game of the MACJC State Tournament.

Southwest had taken a 73-72 lead with 24.0 seconds left when Tee Myers hit a 15-footer as the shot clock expired.

The Lady Bobcats got the ball inside and missed a shot, but Spane was there for the putback and foul.

Southwest's Talisa Sherman missed a running 15-footer as time expired, and the Lady Bobcats had captured the championship at the Davis Event Center on the Itawamba Community College campus.

JCJC rallied from a 67-58 deficit with just over six minutes remaining.

It was the fourth state championship for JCJC head coach Sandra Sumrall. Sumrall had retired after last year, but came back to be the coach just weeks before the season when the school needed a replacement.

Sumrall had led the Lady Bobcats to titles in 2000-01, 2008-09 and 2009-10. The only other women's title for JCJC came in 1947-48.

The Lady Bobcats, winners of seven straight, are now 19-7 overall and will play Co-Lin in the Region 23 Tournament on Thursday at Mississippi College. Southwest is 19-7 and will also be in the regionals.

Crystal Clay led JCJC with 17 points, while Spane and Kaylan Hughes added 13 each. Latisha McCullum finished with 11.

Katrina Littlepage led the Lady Bears with 26 points. Sherman added 16.

Southwest had beaten JCJC twice during the regular season.

JCJC took a 20-13 lead with 9:48 left in the first half when Kaylan Hughes scored. The Lady Bears came back and went ahead 26-24 with 5:57 left when Littlepage hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key. But JCJC would lead 36-35 at halftime.

JCJC took a 44-40 lead with 15:31 left when Hughes scored. A Starla Daggans' basket gave JCJC a 51-50 lead with 11:51 remaining. It would be their last lead until the final minute of play.

The Lady Bears would go on a 17-7 run and take a 67-58 lead with 6:04 to play when Littlepage made a 28-footer. A Littlepage free throw made it 71-65 with 2:42 left.

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