BOAZ, Ala. – The East Mississippi Community College women's basketball team improved to 9-2 on the season heading into the semester break with a 62-59 road victory over Snead State Community College during Monday night action played at the Plunkett Wallace Gymnasium.
In their final hoops action before the Christmas and New Year's holidays, the Lady Lions recovered from a pair of early three-point deficits as well as first-half foul trouble on reigning all-conference guard Tye Metcalf to grab a 30-26 halftime lead over Snead State.
EMCC's lead increased to 38-33 before the Lady Parsons went on a 14-4 run during the second half to take a 47-42 advantage with 2:14 remaining in the third quarter. The visitors responded by scoring five unanswered points to close the quarter tied at 47-all.
With Metcalf and freshman Ja'Mia Hollings teaming to lead the way by combining to score the first seven points of the fourth quarter, the Lady Lions seemed to establish control of the game by grabbing a 54-47 lead. A 3-pointer by Kailey Rory, however, paved the way for a 9-2 Snead State run that knotted the score at 56-56 with 1:40 left in regulation.
Down the stretch, Maddie Riley's inside basket on a feed from Metcalf gave the visitors the lead for good. Following a 1-of-2 effort at the line for EMCC's Topazia Hawkins, Riley added two free throws to lengthen the lead to 61-56 with 12.3 seconds remaining on the game clock.
Things then got a little interesting during the game's final seconds when Rory drilled her fourth 3-pointer of the game following an offensive rebound by Snead State to make it a 61-59 game. After Riley's 1-of-2 trip to the charity stripe with just 1.7 ticks left kept it a one-possession contest, Rory's three-point attempt from the corner misfired at the buzzer to extend the Lady Lions' current win streak to four consecutive games heading into the holiday break.
Metcalf scored 11 of her team-high 13 points after halftime to pace Coach Sharon Thompson's trio of double-digit scorers. Riley followed with a dozen points and 10 rebounds to register her seventh career collegiate double-double. Jackson State transfer Taylor Lattimore added 11 points off the EMCC bench, while Hollings contributed eight points and eight rebounds to the winning effort.
Falling to 9-4 on the season, Snead State was led by Connie Clarke's game-high 18 points. Rory and Tamia Knight followed with 17 and 12 points, respectively, for the Lady Parsons.
The East Mississippi basketball teams will return to doubleheader action on Monday, Jan. 6, when the EMCC men and women play host to Meridian Community College on the Scooba campus. A 5:30 women's game will be followed by a 7:30 men's contest at EMCC's Keyes T. Currie Coliseum.