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Co-Lin fights vigorously, but falls short in title game

The Copiah-Lincoln Community College Lady Wolves overcame a 13-point, fourth quarter deficit on Thursday but fell to No. 13 Jones College, 58-52, in the MACJC Championship.

The loss drops the Lady Wolves to 20-6 on the year but does not end Co-Lin’s season as the Lady Wolves will play as the No. 2 seed in the NJCAA Region XXIII Tournament next week on the campus of Mississippi College in Clinton. Co-Lin will be in action on Tuesday, but games times have not been delegated yet. Fans can listen to the action live on colinathletics.com.

Both high-octane offenses struggled in the opening minutes as the game was tied at 4-4 after four minutes of play. T’Kyra Hicks broke that early tie with a midrange jumper to put the Lady Wolves on top 6-4. That lead was short lived as Jones went on to outscore the Lady Wolves 10-3 down the stretch to take a 14-9 lead after one quarter.

Jones hit a big three-pointer early in the second to stretch their lead to 17-13, but Co-Lin’s Ciara Norwood responded on the next possession with a deep-ball to cut the lead to just one 17-16. After a turnover, TaMara Riley rattled home a pair of free throws to put Co-Lin back on top 18-17. Things were back and forth as the game was tied at 22-22 with 5:33 remaining in the quarter, but the Lady Bobcats closed out the quarter with a 12-5 run that lasted until the half. The offensive effort gave Jones a 34-25 lead going into the locker rooms.

The third quarter began with a lot of action as the teams scored on both ends of the floor. The Lady Wolves capitalized on a pair of technical foul free throws to cut Jones’ lead to 10, 41-31, with 5:21 remaining in the quarter. The remainder of the period was a defensive stalemate as the teams combined for just three points. With both teams scoring just eight points in the third, the Lady Bobcats took their nine-point, 42-33, lead into the fourth.

The Lady Wolves came alive in the fourth quarter and began rally back. Co-Lin fired off a 15-5 run that lasted nearly the entire quarter. Riley shined during the streak as she hit a deep three and a pair of big free throws. Co-Lin crashed the boards on the other end of the floor to limit Jones’ scoring opportunities, and to keep the effort alive. The scoring burst culminated in a long three-pointer from Hicks that gave Co-Lin a one-point, 48-47, lead with just 1:35 to play. The Lady Bobcats quickly responded with a layup followed by a steal and another easy basket to bounce back to a 51-48 lead with just 46 seconds on the clock. After a Co-Lin three-point miss the Lady Wolves resorted to fouling, but Jones knocked down the free throws late to win 58-52.

Hicks led Co-Lin in scoring with 16 points, while Carter and Riley both netted nine. Carter led Co-Lin on the boards with 10, while Camryn Davis and Darien Tubby grabbed seven.

Maya Jones led the Lady Bobcats with 15 points. Kyia Weathersby posted a double-double after scoring 14 points and bringing down a team-best 15 rebounds.

Co-Lin shot 28 percent (18-of-65) from the floor, 28 percent (5-of-18) from three-point range, and 79 percent (11-of-14) from the free throw line. The Lady Bobcats shot 29 percent (20-of-70) from the floor, 27 percent (4-of-15) from downtown, and 82 percent (14-of-17) from the stripe. Jones out-rebounded the Lady Wolves 54 to 47.