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Lady Wolves leap to 16-0

WESSON – Raising their record to a perfect 16-0 Monday night,the Co-Lin Lady Wolves whipped Southwest Community College 72-51 inMullen Gymnasium. The No. 5-ranked Lady Wolves, displaying teamworkand balanced scoring in the South Division victory, were led byfreshman center Christy Brown’s 17 points.

Co-Lin sophomore guard Rusti Smith dished out 2 assists and made2 steals last night despite an aching right knee. She hurt the kneein last Thursday’s win at Jones County Junior College. After lastnight’s game she was given a bag of ice and some antiinflammatorymedicine by team athletic trainer Rob Steele.

“My knee hurts some but it will be okay,” said Smith.

Asked about Co-Lin’s climb to 16-0, Smith said, “Our team isdisciplined and we never quit.” Co-Lin overcame a 25-point,first-half deficit to beat Jones County last week inEllisville.

“We work hard in practice and Coach (Gwyn) Young is a greatcoach,” Smith continued. “This is a rivalry game and it feels goodto beat Southwest.”

Sophomore teammate Melanie Fairchild played high schoolbasketball at Bogue Chitto and lives just a few miles from theSouthwest campus in Summit. She scored 8 points last night,including a pair of treys.

“We work hard every day in practice and we have a good coach,”said Fairchild. “We are working toward the state tournament. That’sone of our goals.”

Young’s She-Wolves overwhelmed Southwest on the backboards. Theywere led by 6-foot freshman Mindy Livaudais who grabbed 11rebounds. Brown finished with 7 rebounds and Tiffany Dales had6.

“Our defense was pretty good the first half,” said Young. “Westopped the things they wanted to do. We made a couple of stealsand got some easy baskets.”

Co-Lin sophomore guard Denise Catchings chipped in 11 points andmade 4 assists.

First-year Southwest coach Mark Swindle is making the transitionfrom McComb Parklane Academy to the junior college ranks. His LadyBears slipped to 10-7 with the loss.

“Co-Lin has a super team,” said Swindle. “We didn’t make ourlittle shots and they overwhelmed us inside. Their girls are sowide, it’s hard to get around them.”

Southwest got nine points from guard Natasha Booth and forwardCollete White. They were down 41-27 at halftime and made just 21 of59 shots from the field.

The Lady Bears reduced their deficit to 9 points, 48-39, with14:15 left in the game when 6-3 center Brenda Alexander scored fromthe baseline. Co-Lin responded with a strong surge as Catchingssank a baseline jumper, Fairchild scored on a short jumper andBrown cashed in a 2-pointer for a 55-40 lead.

@Bbstandings:Co-Lin 72, Southwest 51

Southwest (51) Collete White 9, Natasha Booth 9,Jefferson 0, Col. White 3, Forest 0, Tanner 8, Williams 3, Heron 4,Alexander 5, Dixon 0, Thomas 0, A. Smith 2, Crossley 8, Hays0.

Co-Lin (72) Christy Brown 17, Fairchild 5, Catchings 11,Livaudais 5, Andrews 5, Dales 10, Simmons 6, Irvin 0, Davis 5,Dennie 1, Wallace 0, R. Smith 2, G. Smith 2.

Halftime: Co-Lin 41-27.

Total fouls: Southwest 21. Co-Lin 16. Fouledout-none.

Free Throws M-A: Southwest 7-14. Co-Lin13-25.

3-point goals: Southwest 1-10. Co-Lin 5-14 (R. Smith0-3, Wallace 0-1, Davis 1-1, Livaudais 1-1, Catchings 1-5,Fairchild 2-3).

Rebounds: Southwest 34. Co-Lin 40 (Livaudais11).

Turnovers: Southwest 18. Co-Lin 15. Assists: Southwest11. Co-Lin 20 (Livaudais 5, Catchings 4). Steals: Southwest 13.Co-Lin 12.

Field Goals M-A: Southwest 21-59. Co-Lin27-68.