POPLARVILLE — Pearl River Community College opened its 2012-2013 women’s and men’s basketball seasons in grand style with a sweep over Baton Rouge (La.) here Thursday in Shivers Gymnasium.
The Lady Wildcats were 56-51 winners, while the Wildcats took a 64-62 decision. Both PRCC squads improved to 1-0 overall, while BRCC’s teams dropped to 0-1.
In the women’s game, Pearl River led for the first five minutes of the contest, but Jacquieisha Spears banged in a bucket at the 14:15 mark of the first half to put BRCC up 6-5. The Lady Bears retained their lead for the next seven minutes before Coutney Osler of Puckett High sank a basket to give the Lady Wildcats a brief 17-16 lead with 7:00 left.
The lead exchanged hands twice over the next half-minute, but PRCC’s Wisdom James of Durant High hit a pair of foul shots to put The River up by one. Baton Rouge tied it up at 21-21 with 5:04 left before the break, but the Lady Wildcats answered with an 11-5 scoring run to lead 32-26 at the break.
The Lady Bears managed to tie it up three times in the second half, but never regained the lead. After Kasiney Williams’ free throws knotted it up at 51-51 wtih 1:26 left, the Lady Wildcats finished the game with a 5-3 run.
Ke’ra St. John (12 rebounds) and Ashley Williams led BRCC with 13 points each, while Swilliams scored nine, Charki’ra Fields five, Keisha Toston four, Jamera Martin (five rebounds), Desiree Savage, and Kaylynn Walker, two a piece; and Talaih Robertson one.
For Pearl River, Kalisha Washington out of Murrah High in Jackson led the way with 12 points (two treys), while James added 11 (five rebounds), Osler 10, Velscia Dixon of East Marion High eight (10 rebounds, two blocked shots), Daiquari Raine of Poplarville High seven (nine rebounds), Francheska Bowman out of Choctaw High in Ft. Walton Beach, Fla., five (seven rebounds), and Chaquita McGee (four assists) of Yazoo City High and Lolecia Richardson out of Provine High in Jackson, two each.
Pearl River hit 71.4 percent (20 of 28) from the free throw line to Baton Rouge’s 66.7 percent (10 of 15), while the Lady Wildcats were 17 of 53 (32.1 percent) from the field to the Lady Bears’ 19-of-58 (32.8 percent) effort. From three-point range, PRCC was two of nine (22.2 percent), while BRCC was three of nine (33.3 percent).
The River had the edge in rebounding with 45 (19 offensive, 26 defensive) to Baton Rouge’s 40 (18 offensive, 22 defensive). The Lady Bears committed 17 turnovers in the game to the Lady Wildcats’ 25.
In the men’s game, the score was tied five times and the lead exchanged hands six times in the first half before Nick’Laus Warren out of Murrah High in Jackson pulled off a three-point play with 5:18 before the break to put the Wildcats up 26-25.
Warren’s antics kicked off a 13-3 scoring run to pump The River’s lead to 38-28 with 1:56 left before the half. Deshawn Washington and DeAngelo Coleman out of South Pike High in Magnolia exchanged treys in the final 1:15, while Coleman’s put back at the buzzer gave PRCC a 43-33 advantage at the intermission.
The Bears kept it close in the second half, but never took the lead. BRCC opened with an impressive 11-4 scoring run to pull to within one — 47-46 — with 13:10 left, but that was as close as the Bears would get. Baton Rouge’s John Isaac banged in a three pointer at the final buzzer to pull his team to within two.
Isaac led BRCC with 14 points, while Washington added 11 (five rebounds, three treys), Darrice Whitley nine (eight rebounds), Jeffery Walker eight, Alex Overs and Damarcus Pitts, six each; Trey Anthony five, and Bouna Niang (six rebounds) and Morris Wright, two each.
Xavian Rimmer out of Piney Woods School in Jackson led the Wildcats with 15 points, while Jeremy Hollimon of Gulfport High added 11, Kaven Bernard out of Assumption High in Napoleonville, La., nine; Coleman seven, Frank Snow out of Sagemont High in Wellington, Fla., five (five rebounds), Devontai Foye of Hattiesburg High and Jimmy Henderson of Houston High, four each; Daniel Grieves (six rebounds) out of St. Stanislaus in Bay St. Louis and Warren, three each; DeMondre Harvey of Minden (La.) High two, and Josh Carpenter of Oak Grove High one.
Pearl River hit 70.4 percent (19 of 27) from the free throw line to Baton Rouge’s 64.7 percent (11 of 17), while the Wildcats were 21 of 57 (36.8 percent) from the field to the Bears’ 22-of-55 (40 percent) effort. From three-point range, PRCC was three of nine (33.3 percent) and BRCC was seven of 16 (43.8 percent).
Baton Rouge led on the boards with 43 rebounds (18 offensive, 25 defensive) to The River’s 36 (16 offensive, 20 defensive), while the Bears committed 27 turnovers to the Wildcats’ 16.
Pearl River and Baton Rouge rematches are set for Monday, Nov. 26, in Baton Rouge at 5 p.m. (women) and 7 p.m. (men).
PRCC returns to action Monday when MACJC non-division foe Holmes visits Shivers Gym for 5 p.m. (women) and 7 p.m. (men) contests before both squads hit the road for Delgado (La.) in New Orleans Thursday, Nov. 8 at the same game times.