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Salem eliminates Bogue Chitto

DAILY LEADER / SCOTT BOYD / Bogue Chitto's Jeremiah Perkins goes in for two during Tuesday night's loss to Salem in the South State 1A opener. Perkins, a junior, finished with 8 points.

DAILY LEADER / SCOTT BOYD / Bogue Chitto’s Jeremiah Perkins goes in for two during Tuesday night’s loss to Salem in the South State 1A opener. Perkins, a junior, finished with 8 points.

SALEM – The Bogue Chitto Bobcats were eliminated from post-season play Tuesday night with a disappointing 79-68 loss at Salem in the South State 1A tourney.

“This is a tough place to play, even when you are shooting well,” said first year Bogue Chitto coach Mark Pitts. “We missed too many shots and had trouble keeping up with their fast-paced game. We lost to them twice during the regular season so we knew we were facing a big challenge.”

The Bobcats finished the season 11-21. They had advanced to Tuesday night’s South State 2A opener after winning a first round contest in last week’s District 7-1A Tournament. The Cats fell to St. Aloysius in the district semis, and lost a close contest to Pelahatchie in Saturday’s consolation.

Bogue Chitto held their own with Salem in the first quarter Tuesday night, trailing just 19-16 at the end of the first period. They fell back to trail 36-26 at halftime. Damien Terrell, who finished with a team-high 23 points, tried to help the Cats mount a comeback, but Salem kept answering with their fast-break plan. Bogue Chitto was ice cold outside the paint and hit only one three-pointer – it came just seconds before the final buzzer.

Dennis Rogers had 14 for the Bobcats. Jeremiah Perkins added 8, and Jeremy Blackwell and Theo Simmons had 6 each.

Salem, which improved to 21-6, was led by Shannon Damond’s 35 points. The Wildcats now advance to the South State Tournament – scheduled for either Stringer or Dexter. Along with the win, it was a historic night for the Salem family as they watched the final game for their historic old gym – originally built in 1947. A new $1.7 million facility is being built next door and will be ready for next season.

Tuesday night’s loss to Salem closed out the high school hoops career for a talented group of Bogue Chitto seniors; Jeremy Blackwell, Eli Holmes, Brock Roberts, Dennis Rogers, Theo Simmons and Damien Terrell.