NP Basketball

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 19, 2010

North Panola Jr. High’s Ketwun House (right) takes the ball down the court against a Tunica defender Saturday night at the Cougar Invitational Tournament in the championship game. House led the Cougars with 17 points in the game. He scored 34 in the tournament. The Panolian photo by Myra Bean

NPJH Cougars win tournament; girls 2nd

By Myra Bean

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The North Panola Jr. High boys ended their season with an exclamation point by defeating Tunica, the only team to defeat them this year.

The Jr. High Cougars (11-2) hosted an invitational round robin tournament featuring seven boys and girls teams in 11 games. Batesville Jr. High boys also played in the tournament.

The Cougar/Tunica game was the final game for the tournament championship and the Cougars won 35-19.

The Cougars jumped out to a 21-12 halftime lead. Ketwun House led the Cougars with 17 overall points, scoring 12 in the first half. Tunica just could not gain ground against the determined Cougar squad as the pressure defense and fast pace caused turnovers which led to scores.

Other Cougar scorers included Gerotney Kelson, seven points; Robert Oliver, five points; Darius Jackson, four points; and Jatavious Farmer, two points.

It was a meeting of coaching brothers-in-law as the Cougars took on the Batesville Jr. High Tigers in game two. Cougar coach Jamone Edwards faced Tiger coach and brother-in-law Artee Smith. The Cougars showed no mercy and defeated the Tigers 34-22.

The Cougars had an 18-5 halftime lead. The teams were tied at four and then the Cougars broke loose for 14 unanswered points.

Kelson led the Cougars in scoring with 12 points.

Scoring for Batesville were Brady Smith and Tydrekus Bradford, four points each; with two points each were Matt Davis, Quandez Lee, L.J. Carr, Da’Shawn Lindsey and Kenan Hentz.

In game five the Cougars defeated Independence 41-27. At the half the Cougars led 22-10.

No Cougar scored in double figures but House and Jackson led with nine points each, followed by Nelson and Oliver with eight points each. Farmer scored five points and Xavier Brown rounded out the scoring with two points.

The Batesville Jr. High boys played Tunica in game eight and lost 35-29.

Bradford led the Tigers with eight points, followed by Lindsey with seven.

NPJH Girls

The North Panola Jr. High Lady Cougars finished the tournament in second place behind tournament champions Lafayette County.

The Lady Cougars started the tournament in game one defeating Independence 15-14. It was a come-back effort on the part of the Lady Cougars as they were down 8-6 at the half and then Independence led 14-6 over half-way through  the second half.

The Lady Cougars’ Tauwauna Robertson scored with 7:30 left in the game. The rest of the Lady Cougars took a cue from her and started to cut the lead.

Brayanta Conley cut the score to 14-10 on a basket and with 3:40 left in the game, Robertson scored another basket to pull within two points, 14-12.

It was back and forth between the two teams, but finally Morgan Hightower hit the biggest basket of all. With 48.2 seconds left, Hightowers’ three-pointer put the Lady Cougars ahead for the first time since the beginning of the game, 15-14. The Lady Cougars played aggressive defense the last 20 seconds of the game, causing two Independence turnovers on traveling and carrying the ball to run out the clock and claim the win.

Robertson led the Lady Cougars in scoring with six points, followed by Hightower with four, Laquaisha Gross with three and Conley with two.

In game seven, the Lady Cougars defeated Tunica 17-11. The Lady Cougars led 10-8 at halftime.

Hightower led the team with 10 points, followed by Brooklyn Polk with three.

In game nine, which turned out to be the championship game, Lafayette defeated the Lady Cougars 22-8. Polk scored the only field goal for the Lady Cougars in the game. Conley hit four free throws and led in scoring. Hightower was held to one free throw. At the half, Lafayette led 6-3.

Other games

In game three the Lafayette ladies defeated Tunica. In game four the Tunica boys defeated Oxford. Independence ladies defeated Lafayette in game six, and the Oxford boys defeated Independence in game ten.