The Itawamba Lady Indians used a dominant fourth period to pull away from East Central Community College and end the Lady Warriors season with a 78-68 win in the 2019 National Junior College Athletic Association Region 23 Basketball Tournament Tuesday, March 5, at A.E. Wood Coliseum on the Mississippi College campus in Clinton.
The ECCC Lady Warriors, the No. 6 seed in the tournament, ended their season with an 18-6 overall record.
No. 3 seeded Itawamba (21-4), which won the MACJC North Division regular season title, advances to play top seeded Jones College in the semifinals. Jones defeated Northeast 72-61. Gulf Coast and Copiah-Lincoln will meet in the other women's semifinal game.
East Central held an early 18-10 lead over Itawamba, before the Lady Indians closed the first period with a 6-0 run. The two teams battled back and forth in the second period, with Itawamba taking a 38-36 lead at intermission.
The Lady Warriors led much of the third period and held a five-point lead, 57-52, with 10 minutes to play. But the fourth period belonged to Itawamba as the Lady Indians outscored East Central 26-11 to claim the 78-68 quarterfinal win.
Freshman forward KeiMoya Walker (Jackson, Murrah) led East Central with 14 points and three steals off the bench. Sophomore guard Breanna Riley of Biloxi also came off the bench to score 13 points, dish out four assists, and claim three steals. Sophomore forward Diamond Wraggs of Louisville had 10 points, while freshman forward Kimberly Green (Greenwood, Amanda Elzy) pulled down 10 rebounds.
The Lady Warriors shot just 37 percent from the field in the second half, and missed all six of their three-point tries.