Lady Rockets’ victory assures state tournament berth
Wednesday, February 15, 2017 6:00 PM
The Neshoba Central Lady Rockets qualified for the Class 5A state basketball tournament Monday night when they defeated Ridgeland 62-52 in the first round of the Region 3-5A tournament.
Neshoba Central Demarcus Webster (10) blocks the shot by Ridgeland's Darius Kent in a recent contest. The Rockets are hosting the Region 3-5A Tournament this week.
“This is what we have been playing for,” Coach Fred Morris said. “Our team has really come together in the past couple of weeks and we are playing like I know we can. We are making good shots and playing good defense. It takes playing well on both sides to win.”
The score was tied at 12-12 after the first quarter. Neshoba Central outscored the Lady Titans 15-6 in the second period to take a 27-18 lead in at the half.
That would be the difference because the teams played even in the second half. The Lady Rockets had a 33-31 scoring edge over three quarters.
Relissia Ray led with 18 points while Andria Carter and Taylor Ben both scored 16 points.
The Lady Rockets improved to 14-10 on the season.
The Neshoba Central girls will advance to Friday night’s championship game when they take on the winner between Lanier and Vicksburg starting at 7 p.m. That game was to be played Tuesday night. Ridgeland will play the loser in an elimination game starting at 4 p.m.
With their victory, the Lady Rockets will host a state tournament game next week. If they win the region championship, they will draw a first round bye and get to host a second round game.
The Neshoba Central boys were to play Lanier Tuesday night with the winner advancing to Friday night’s championship game which tips off at 8:30 p.m.
The winner will play the winner between Vicksburg and Ridgeland game on Monday. The losers play an elimination game at 5:30 p.m.
The Rockets came into the tournament ranked No. 1 in a statewide poll for Class 5A teams. They did not play last week entered the week with a 20-3 record.