POPLARVILLE Pearl River Community College swept Southwest Mississippi in women and men MACJC South Division basketball action here Tuesday in Shivers Gymnasium. The Lady Wildcats were dominating 69-48 winners over the Lady Bears, while the Wildcats took an impressive 77-65 victory. PRCC women improved to 7-4 overall and evened its division mark at 1-1, while its men are now 6-6 and undefeated in league play at 2-0. Southwest women dropped to 3-10 and 0-2, while its men are now 6-7 and 1-1. In the women game, Pearl River held SMCC scoreless for the first five minutes while building an 8-0 lead before Shaniece Sheffield sank three straight threes over a two-and-a-half-minute span to cut the Lady Wildcats lead to 12-11 with 12:55 left before the half. But PRCC answered with a dominating 26-10 scoring run to pump its lead to 38-21 its largest of the half in the final two minutes. The Lady Wildcats led 40-25 at the intermission. The River outscored SMCC 29-23 in the second half and built its lead to as much as 62-35 in the final nine minutes. Sheffield led Southwest with a game-high 21 points (two treys, three steals), while Shanequa Bibbs added 11 (three steals), Taylor Williams five (six rebounds), and Alexis Avert, Cassie Berry, Julencia Brown, Alex Newsome, Lacey Orr, and Casey Brumfield, two a piece. For Pearl River, Shana Ward, an East Central CC transfer from Carthage, led the way with 11 (five rebounds, three steals); while Shanta Echols of Sumrall High (eight rebounds), Toy Johnson of Pascagoula High (nine rebounds), and Lolecia Richardson out of Provine High in Jackson (eight rebounds) added nine a piece. Kyiana Allen, a Southern Shreveport CC transfer from Ruston, La. (six rebounds), and Branita Malone out of Choctaw High in Ft. Walton Beach, Fla. (five rebounds), scored seven each; while Alayna Bridges of Oak Grove High added six, Quentessa Bullock of East Marion High four, Jeronda Beason of Poplarville High three, and Samantha Gunn, a Canton resident who prepped at Velma Jackson High (three steals), and Chaquita McGee of Yazoo City High, two each. Southwest hit 72.4 percent (21 of 29) from the free throw line to Pearl River 62.5 percent (20 of 32), while the Lady Bears were 12 of 51 (23.5 percent) from the field to the Lady Wildcats 23-of-60 (38.3 percent) effort. From three-point range, SMCC was three of 16 (18.8 percent), while PRCC was three of 10 (30 percent). The River dominated the board with 58 rebounds (23 offensive, 35 defensive) to Southwest 30 (10 offensive, 20 defensive), while the Lady Bears committed 18 turnovers to the Lady Wildcats 21. In the men game, Southwest led for the first four-and-a-half minutes before Yondarius Johnson, a Grambling State (La.) transfer from Plain Dealing, La., hit two of his game-high 28 points on the night at the 15:00 mark to knot things at 10-10. Johnson basket kicked off an 11-3 Wildcat scoring run to build The River lead to 21-13 over the next four-and-a-half minutes before Wesley Blackmon hit back-to-back treys and Mark Bridgewater put back knotted it up at 23-23 with 8:05 left before the break. Pearl River responded with a 16-12 run the rest of the way to lead 39-35 at the intermission. The Wildcats opened the second half with a 19-9 scoring surge to build their lead to 58-44 their largest of the game with 12:40 left. The Bears managed to cut PRCC lead to seven 64-57 when Bridgewater pulled off a three-point play at the 4:11 mark, but the Wildcats iced the game with a 13-7 run the rest of the way. Pearl River was eight for 10 at the foul line in the final 1:05 of the contest. Blackmon paced SMCC with 24 points (two treys, five rebounds), while Bridgewater scored 10 (two treys, five rebounds), Cory Lacey six, Michael Hall five (seven rebounds), Devin Flowers and Mikel Henry, three each; and Josh Brannon (five rebounds) and Christ Lawrence, two each. Johnson finished with a season-high 28 points (six rebounds, three assists, three steals), while Zane Knowles, another Grambling transfer who hails from Nassau, Bahamas, added 15 (seven rebounds). Josh Carpenter of Oak Grove High scored nine, Quentin Watkins out of Lanier High in Jackson six (four assists), Jyrus Carriere out of St. Martin High in Biloxi and Marcus Rawls of Picayune High, four each; Raheem England of Decatur (Ala.) High (five rebounds), Mike Henry of Wayne County High (four rebounds), and Will Reid out of St. Stanislaus in Bay St. Louis, three a piece; and Daterris Rogers of Wayne County High two. Southwest hit 58.3 percent (seven of 12) from the free throw line to Pearl River 63 percent (17 of 27), while the Bears were 25 of 61 (41 percent) from the field to the Wildcats impressive 29-of-48 (60.4 percent) effort. From three-point range, SMCC was eight of 23 (34.8 percent), while PRCC was two of six (33.3 percent). Southwest led on the boards with 35 rebounds (15 offensive, 20 defensive) to The River 31 (six offensive, 25 defensive), while the Bears committed 15 turnovers to the Wildcats 13. Pearl River eyes a division rematch with Southwest Thursday, Feb. 9, in Summit. PRCC returns to action Thursday when South Division foe Hinds plays host in Utica Thursday at 6 p.m. (women) and 8 p.m. (men), then The River hosts back-to-back South Division arch-rival match ups in Shivers Gymnasium against Jones County Monday, Jan. 23, and Mississippi Gulf Coast Thursday, Jan. 26. Both dates see game times 5 p.m. (women) and 7 p.m. (men).
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