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Lady Panthers slip by North Pike; Ole Brook roars

DAILY LEADER / MARTY ALBRIGHT / Brookhaven's Lazorian McNulty (23) is fouled from behind by North Pike's Mark Jones (22), while driving in the paint for a lay up Friday night in Sinclair Gymnasium.

DAILY LEADER / MARTY ALBRIGHT / Brookhaven’s Lazorian McNulty (23) is fouled from behind by North Pike’s Mark Jones (22), while driving in the paint for a lay up Friday night in Sinclair Gymnasium.

Senior guard Diamond Herring’s game-winning free throw in the final second of the contest helped the Brookhaven Lady Panthers claim a 45-44 victory over the North Pike Lady Jaguars Friday night in Sinclair Gymnasium.

In boys’ action, the Panthers relied on their depth in the fourth quarter to hand North Pike their first loss of the season with a 71-47 win.

Brookhaven resumes action Tuesday as they travel North to Terry to battle the Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs for three games. Junior varsity action is set to begin at 5 p.m. The varsity girls tip off at 6, followed by the boys’ game at 7:30 p.m.

North Pike returns home to host the Hazlehurst Indians and Lady Indians Tuesday. The varsity games begin at 6 p.m. for the girls, followed by the boys.

Brookhaven 45, North Pike 44 

The Lady Panthers and Lady Jags provided a tough, defensive ball game for their basketball fans. Both schools fought back-and-forth in a close contest from start to finish.

In the first quarter, North Pike commanded a 9-5 lead before Brookhaven battled back to cut into North Pike’s lead in the second quarter as the Lady Jags managed hold onto a 21-19 lead at halftime.

In the second half, the defensive battle continued as Ole Brook charged back to tie the game at 30-all after three quarters of action.

In the fourth quarter, the Lady Jags and Lady Panthers traded baskets on several occasions. North Pike captured a four-point lead with two minutes left, but Brookhaven (4-4) battled hard to tie the game at 44-all in the closing second.

North Pike (4-3) elected to hold onto the ball for a final shot with 10 seconds left; after the missed shot Brookhaven’s Diamond Herring recovered the rebound and was fouled with eight 10ths of a second remaining. Herring went to the free throw line for two shots. After missing the first shot, a timeout was called to ice Herring’s second attempt, but she held her composure and made the game-winner.

Herring was the offensive leader for the Lady Panthers with 10 points. Four players reached double figures in the rebound department as Fredericka Fairman led with 13 boards. Jessica Wilson gathered 12 rebounds. Kynitria Hill had 11 rebounds and Chantel Quarles chipped in 10.

“We made a lot of mistakes throughout the game,” said BHS coach Freda Craft. “But our girls continued to work hard and wanted it more than they did in the fourth quarter.”

Junior forward Rickera Martin paced the Lady Jags’ offense with a game-high 21 points.

“We did everything we could to hand it to them,” said North Pike coach Lance Golmon. “Overall, I was very disappointed with our play. Brookhaven did a great job keeping us out of the paint and eliminating our second-chance opportunities at the end.”

Brookhaven 71, North Pike 47 

The Ole Brook Panthers came out in the first quarter on fire to take a 22-7 lead before turning ice cold in the second and third quarter.

North Pike (6-1) outscored Brookhaven 31-28 in the second and third quarter, but the Panthers managed to hold onto an 49-38 lead after three quarters of action.

In the fourth quarter, Ole Brook (6-2) came out and rekindled the spark they had in the first quarter and roared past the Jaguars 22-9 to secure the win.

Sophomore guard Lazorian McNulty led four Panthers in double figures with 14 points. Damarius Brooks chipped in with 12 points. Shaquan Richardson and Tavis Moore added 10 points apiece. Moore was the top rebounder for Ole Brook with six boards.

“We got off to a great start, but went cold in the second quarter,” said BHS coach Preston Wilson. “In the second half, we did a lot better handling their pressure and continued our defensive pressure on them to create some easy transition baskets for us.”

Dehendrick Wells paced the Jaguars’ offense with 14 points. Deshauntrell Leonard and Devin Abram contributed 10 points each.

We came out sluggish and could not recover from it,” said North Pike coach Keith Russ. “We came in too hyped up and made too many mistakes both mentally and physically that cost us. Now, we must regroup and improve on our mistakes.”

In junior varsity boys’ action,  the North Pike Jags clobbered the Panthers 40-19.

Deshauntrell Leonard and Mark Jones were the offensive scoring leader for the Jaguars with 10 points apiece. Juwan Adams contributed seven points.

Garrick Smith was the top leader for the Ole Brook Panthers with six points. Darius Nelson and Marte Jones helped with four points each.

DAILY LEADER / MARTY ALBRIGHT /  Brookhaven's Diamond Herring (32) hits a game-winning free throw to help the Lady Panthers edge North Pike.

DAILY LEADER / MARTY ALBRIGHT / Brookhaven’s Diamond Herring (32) hits a game-winning free throw to help the Lady Panthers edge North Pike.