The East Central Community College Warriors took Southwest Mississippi into overtime in an attempt to put an end to a five-game losing streak but came up short in a heartbreaking 92-88 loss to the Bears Thursday, Feb. 1. The ECCC Lady Warriors fell 70-55 to the Southwest Lady Bears in the first game of the night.
Both games were played at the basketball center on the Southwest campus in Summit.
In the men's action, the MACJC South Division opponents were tied 79-79 after 40 minutes of play forcing the overtime period. Southwest went on a 10-2 run to open the overtime and grab control of the game. The Warriors would get within four at 90-86 but Southwest free throws would seal the 92-88 win.
The game was close throughout the night with spurts by both teams. The Bears had an early 12-point lead in the first half, before the Warriors would eventually tie the game and only trail 34-32 at the half. East Central's only lead of the game came early in the second half at 35-34.
Southwest went to the free throw line 20 more times than the Warriors in the contest.
East Central had five players in double figures, led by sophomore guard Thurston McCarty of Quitman with 20. Also scoring in double figures were sophomore guard Jaquan Dotson of Neshoba Central with 19, sophomore forward Cameron Diggs (Mobile, Ala., Blount) with 16, freshman guard Roti Ware of Morton with 15, and sophomore guard Tavonta Jones of Meridian with 12. Diggs had eight rebounds to lead the Warriors.
The Warriors now stand 8-9 overall and 2-6 in division play. The Southwest Bears improved to 13-4 and 4-4 in the league.
In the women's game, Southwest put five players in double figures in the 15-point win. East Central led 12-10 after the first period in what was a close first half of basketball. The Lady Bears led 28-26 at the intermission. A 24-6 run by Southwest in the third period would be the deciding factor in the game. The Lady Bears took a 52-32 lead and the Lady Warriors could not recover. East Central did get within 11 points, 62-51, late in the fourth period before falling 70-55.
With only six players available for the game, East Central was led by the 17 points of freshman forward Whitney Waters of Heidelberg. Freshman guard Tamirra Haskin of Laurel added 13 points and sophomore guard Autumn Taylor of Newton chipped in 12 points and seven assists.
It was the fourth straight loss for the Lady Warriors. East Central's record fell to 9-7 overall and 2-5 in the MACJC South Division. The Southwest Lady Bears improved to 14-3 overall and 5-3 in the league.
The ECCC Warriors and Lady Warriors return home on Monday, Feb. 5, to host Meridian Community College at 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in Brackeen-Wood Gym in Decatur.
The East Central teams hit the road again Thursday, Feb. 8, when they travel to Perkinston to face Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.
All home basketball games can be heard on WKOZ Cruisin 98.3 or via audio stream and live stream video at www.eccc.edu/eccc-media.