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Lady Wolves’ strong second half falls short

The Copiah-Lincoln Community College Lady Wolves outscored No. 3 Jones County Junior College 49-36 in the second half Thursday, but the rally came up short as Jones escaped with an 80-76 victory.

The loss moves the Lady Wolves to 14-3 on the season, and tied for second in the MACJC South Division with a 5-3 record. Jones is now 15-2 on the year and 8-0 in the division.

The Lady Bobcats could not miss in the opening minutes, as JCJC knocked down five three-pointers in the first five minutes of the contest. The hot start gave the Lady Bobcats an eight-point lead with 3:10 left in the quarter.

Co-Lin shot the ball well in the first half, at 41 percent, but turnovers and second chances on the offensive end for JCJC helped stretched the lead to 17, 44-27, at the half.

Led by Brittany Rose and Alexus Holt, the Lady Wolves came to life in the second half with a 13-2 run over the first four minutes of the third. The run cut the Lady Bobcats’ lead to just six, 46-40. A Holt three-pointer and a Nakeisha Holcomb layup a few minutes later brought the Lady Wolves within a basket of taking the lead, 47-45 with 4:38 remaining in the quarter.

The Co-Lin resurgence wasn’t the result of better shooting, but the Lady Wolves getting stops on the defensive end of the floor and controlling the boards. Late in the third, JCJC rallied and went on a quick 15-4 run to take a 13-point, 62-49.

The fourth quarter saw huge swings in momentum for both teams. JCJC led by 11, 71-60, midway through the period and looked comfortable with the lead, but Co-Lin stuck around and cut the lead to just six with 3:23 on the clock. That lead stretched to 10 again with 1:27 remaining, but the Lady Wolves refused to give in.

Rose hit a three-pointer and got back-to-back steals, resulting in layups for a 7-0 run, bringing Co-Lin within three points, 77-74, with 31 seconds remaining. Co-Lin tried fouling to stay in the ball game, but the Lady Bobcats were disciplined at the free throw line and narrowly escaped with an 80-76 victory.

Rose led the Lady Wolves with 18 points. The sophomore from Jackson also had six rebounds, five assists and three steals. Holt and Diamond Smith both netted 12 points, while Kyeonia Harris rounded out the Lady Wolves’ double-figure scorers with 10. Karry Callahan led Co-Lin on the glass with nine rebounds. 

Alexis Tolefree led the Lady Bobcats with 31 points, while Nique Cherry and Camryn London had strong performances with 17 and 15 points, respectively. Cherry led JCJC on the boards with 17 rebounds.

Co-Lin shot 42 percent (31-for-74) from the field, 33 percent (7-for-21) from the three-point line and 88 percent (7-for-8) from the foul stripe. The Lady Bobcats finished the night shooting 36 percent (22-for-62) from the field, 38 percent (8-for-21) from beyond the arc and 72 percent (28-for-39) from the free throw line.

Co-Lin is back in Mullen Gymnasium on Monday, as the Lady Wolves play host to Gulf Coast Community College at 6 p.m.