Lady Panthers win; boys lose squeaker

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, January 21, 2009

FLORENCE — Florence and Brookhaven split a Division 6-4Abasketball doubleheader Tuesday night in Rankin County. The LadyPanthers fought off a stubborn Lady Eagle contingent 51-41, behinda game-high 27 points from junior guard Kearra Collins. ThePanthers dropped a 52-51 decision to the Eagles, when severalattempts at the possible game-winner were unsuccessful in thewaning seconds.

Brookhaven host Division 6-4A foe Mendenhall Friday night inSinclair Gymnasium.

Brookhaven 51, Florence 41

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It was a nip-and-tuck throughout the game. Even though the LadyPanthers won by double-digits, Florence kept the game close byknocking down key jump shots during the game. Ole Brook’s largestlead was 11 points, compared to a single point by the LadyEagles.

Poor shooting would doom Florence (9-9, 0-7) during the32-minute affair. Coached by Danielle Busby, her ballclub shot only31 percent (16 of 52) from the field and 44 percent (7of 16) fromthe from the charity stripe.

The Lady Panthers (8-9, 3-4) did not fare much better in theshooting relm, hitting a 35 percent clip (18 of 51) from the floorand 56 percent from the free throw line. Collins dropped 12 of herpoints in the second half.

Ole Brook led 15-11 after one quarter and 23-19 at the halftimebreak.

Leading support for head coach Freda Craft’s Lady Panthers werefreshman Shareeka Hill with 10 rebounds and 2 assists. Collins alsohad 8 rebounds and Maleysia Burnett grabbed 6 boards and dished out2 assists. Amber Dickey had 8 assists and 4 steals.

The Lady Panthers had a slim 35-34 rebounding edge, whilecommitting 20 turnovers.

Florence 52, Brookhaven 51

The Panthers (8-11 0-7) took momentum from Monday’s big winagainst Ridgeland to lead the game for 31 minutes, 46 seconds.

Brookhaven, coached by Ronald Hines, led 11-7 after one period,24-21, at the intermission break and 39-36 entering the finalframe.

Florence head coach Darrin Chancellor saw his ballclub trail by9 points halfway through the third at 33-24 from a Chad Hall basketin the paint.

The Eagles feasted on Panthers turnovers in the final minutes topull of the win. They realized a 45-all deadlock on a basket byIvan Mimms with 3:22 left on the clock. His brother, Ira, gaveFlorence the only lead they needed with 14 ticks left on the clockon a layup.

With the clock running, Ole Brook had several opportunities at apotential game-winner; only to see the ball fall harmlessly to thefloor as time expired.

Ira Mimms led all scorers with 16 points and 5 rebounds forFlorence. J.K. Thompson followed with 14 points and 2 assists.Keith Chancellor had 3 steals. Nate Amos had 5 rebounds.

The Panthers were paced by guard Rajavion Stewart with 14 pointsand 5 rebounds Frank Taylor added 13 points and 2 assists. MarcusMage topped all rebounders with 8 and dished out a game-high 6assists.