It came down to the final seconds, but the curse is over.
Coahoma County’s Markevious Phillips game tying lay-up would rim out and Bay Springs would hold off the Red Panthers 54-52 in a thriller in the semifinals of the MHSAA Boys Class 2A playoffs on Tuesday afternoon at the Mississippi Coliseum.
The win was the Bulldogs first ever win over Coahoma County and advances to face Ingomar for the Boys Class 2A State Championship on Friday afternoon at 3 p.m.
“I was a little bit nervous going into the game because I’ve seen all the games Coahoma has beaten us,” said Bay Springs coach Corey Mackey. “I knew the kids were mentally tough enough to pull through. We knew coming into the game we could pressure them, and we just had to survive the first quarter and we did. We are living on a revenge factor these last couple games. Ingomar beat us earlier in the year, so it’s great to have the opportunity to play them.”
Coahoma was up 13-8 at the end of the first quarter, but Bay Springs would end the first half on an 8-2 run to go up 26-20 at halftime on six straight points by Anthony Wheaton.
The Bulldogs would open up the third quarter on a 9-2 run to extend their lead to 35-22 and close the quarter up 43-32.
In the fourth quarter Coahoma County would go on a 7-0 run to cut the Bay Springs lead down to four at 49-45.
After Bentavious Galmore would hit a pair of free throws to cut the Bulldog lead to 54-52 the Panthers got the ball back following a Bay Springs offensive foul with 10 seconds and Phillips drove to the lane and shot rimmed out.
“We gave ourselves a chance and just came up short,” said Coahoma County coach Derrick Moore. “It just wasn’t meant to be for us this year. We have been blessed the last couple of years of winning the gold ball. Markevious wanted the ball and it just rimmed out. Proud of my guys. We got some key guys coming back to make another run to be back here next year.”
Kevin Grimes had a game-high 20 points to lead Bay Springs, while Wheaton added 11 points for Bulldogs (30-3).
“We always talking about surviving for 32 minutes and now we get to play for the last 32 minutes in 2A,” Mackey said. “It’ll be an intense game for sure.”
Jai’sheldon Yates had 15 points to lead Coahoma County, while Phillips added 14 points and Galmore along with Alshun Ross chipped in 10 points for the Red Panthers (28-3).
Ingomar 36, North Forrest 31
Zach Shugars had 10 points as the Falcons were able to hold off a late North Forrest rally to beat the Eagles in the semifinals of the MHSAA Boys Class 2A playoffs.
Nathan Weeden and Clayton Stanford each added eight points for Ingomar (34-4).
Cleveland Williams had 10 points to North Forrest, while Xzavier Barnes added seven points for Eagles (25-5).
Center Hill 73, Hattiesburg 69
IUPUI signee Calvin Temple had a game-high 28 points as the Mustangs were able to hold the Tigers in in the MHSAA Boys Class 5A semifinals.
Kenneth Lewis added 14 points for Center Hill, while Kaeden Laws chipped in 12 points and Decorian Payton had 10 points for the Mustangs (30-3), who will be in the 5A state title game for the first time in school history.
Chris Lewis had 19 points to lead Hattiesburg. Nick Walker added 15 points, Cameron Brown had 13 points and Jayden Harrell had 12 points for the Tigers (24-9).
Olive Branch 86, Forest Hill 60
Joe Cooper would have 21 points as the Quistors would use a big first and fourth quarter to get past the Patriots in the MHSAA Boys Class 5A semifinals.
Olive Branch jumped out to a 18-7 lead at the end of the first quarter and then ended the game outscoring Forest Hill 31-18.
Memphis commit D.J. Jeffries added 18 points and Cameron Matthews chipped in 12 points for the Conquistadors (26-7).
Marc Evans, Jr. had a game-high 24 points to lead Forest Hill, while Keondre Montgomery added 14 points for the Patriots (24-8).
West Lincoln 53, Calhoun City 50
Brittany Sturkey had a game-high 17 points and also had seven rebounds as the Lady Bears held off the Lady Wildcats in the MHSAA Girls Class 2A semifinals.
Calhoun City got a turnover in the final seconds and Tekeitris Honey’s game-tying three-pointer rattled out at the buzzer.
Katelyn Dickerson had 14 points and Elizabeth Stogner chipped in 11 points for the Lady Bears (26-5).
A’Jala Mays had 12 points to lead Calhoun City, while Honey added 11 points and Quay Bailey chipped in 10 points for the Lady Wildcats (30-2).
Newton 51, Puckett 43
Nia McCalphia had 17 points to lead the Lady Tigers past the Lady Wolves in the MHSAA Girls Class 2A semifinals.
Myja McNichols added 14 points for Newton, while McKinley Ware chipped in eight points for the Lady Tigers (28-2).
Alliyah Gray had a game-high 21 points to lead Puckett, while Rose Warren added nine points for the Lady Wolves (29-4).
Newton will face West Lincoln for the Girls Class 2A State Championship on Friday afternoon at 1 p.m.
Olive Branch 78, Hattiesburg 72
Endya Buford poured in a game-high 31 points as the Lady Quistors would hold off the Lady Tigers in the MHSAA Girls Class 5A semifinals.
Dasia Harden added 16 points for Olive Branch, while Marika Owens chipped in 12 points for the Lady Quistors (28-4).
TyKeria Vance had 21 points to lead Hattiesburg, while Melyia Grayson added 15 points and 15 rebounds and Kenedi Walker chipped in 10 points for the Lady Tigers (26-5), the defending Class 5A state champions.
West Jones 62, Germantown 52
Jurnee McLaurin had a game-high 19 points as the Lady Mustangs were able to get past the Lady Mavericks to remain undefeated in the MHSAA Girls Class 5A semifinals.
West Jones (29-0) will be in the Class 5A state championship for the second straight year.
Briana Carr added 15 points for West Jones and Brikayla Gray chipped in 12 points for the Lady Mustangs.
Mirial Cannon had 16 points to lead Germantown, while Madison Booker added 13 points and Marvia Spann had 12 points for the Lady Mavericks (25-5).
9 a.m. — Kossuth vs. Forest
10:30 a.m. — Belmont vs. Choctaw Central
Noon — Holly Springs vs. St. Andrew’s
1:30 p.m. — Yazoo County vs. Velma Jackson
4 p.m. — Hernando vs. Terry
5:30 p.m. — Greenville vs. Pearl
7 p.m. — Tupelo vs. Meridian
8:30 p.m. — Starkville vs. Brandon