Natchez splits pair against Tigers

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 10, 2001

Natchez and Jefferson County split a pair of non-district games Tuesday night at the Natchez High School Gym.

In the varsity girls game, the Lady Tigers overcame an off-game by Sherika Harried and a horrific performance at the free-throw line to stun the Lady Bulldogs 59-56 in overtime.

Travalyn Smith led the Lady Tigers (12-8) with 22 points and nine rebounds and Harried finished with 11 points.

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&uot;Sherika didn’t have a good game, but Shalonda (Wyatt) ran the court well,&uot; said Lady Tigers head coach Flora McKnight. &uot;Travalyn missed too many lay-ups, but she had a good ball game.&uot;

Jefferson County made only 12 of 30 free throws in the game, while Natchez (12-6) went 8-for-9 from the line.

&uot;It wasn’t the prettiest win, but I’ll take it,&uot; McKnight said. &uot;We missed too many free throws. Free throws win ball games.&uot;

The Lady Bulldogs had a 32-25 lead at halftime, but the Lady Tigers turned to their defense to get back in the game.

Natchez scored only eight points in the third quarter, 12 in the fourth quarter and four in overtime.

Chrystal Sylvester led Natchez with 16 points and nine rebounds. Gloria Lewis – whose jumper with seven seconds left forced overtime – and Crystal Brown each had nine points.

In the varsity boys game, Natchez jumped out to a big lead early in the fourth quarter and held off a late Jefferson County rally to defeat the Tigers 74-60.

Vasshun Newborne and Jamal Bouldin each had 17 points and Derek Jarvis came off the bench to score 13 points and grab 12 rebounds to lead Natchez (18-2).

Both teams played a sluggish first quarter marred by turnovers and bad shooting. The Bulldogs had a 10-8 lead over the Tigers (9-7) at the end of the quarter.

The third quarter, however, belonged to the Bulldogs as they scored the first eight points of the quarter and outscored the Tigers 28-13 to take a 58-38 lead.

&uot;We started off slow and came on strong in the second half,&uot; Jarvis said. &uot;When everyone’s in foul trouble, players have to step up off the bench.&uot;

Delvin Thompson led Jefferson County with 18 points and six rebounds, and Dewones Smith added 17 points and hit five three-pointers.

Natchez next plays at Lanier at 6 p.m. Friday. Jefferson County hosts Amite County for three games at 5 p.m Friday.