Williams’ buzzer-beater buries Madison Central

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 29, 2000

Vicksburg High hit timely shots all night Tuesday against Madison Central to stay in the game, but it took a timely effort by Shalonda Williams to give the Missy Gators a win.

Williams scored eight of VHS’ last nine points in the fourth quarter, including a short runner with one second to play that lifted the Missy Gators (4-6) over the Lady Jags, 44-42.

“She stepped up big in the fourth quarter, and I’m real proud of that. But really the whole team stepped up in the fourth quarter,” said VHS coach Mike Coleman, who got his first win against Madison as coach of the Missy Gators.

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Madison (6-5) led 41-35 with about five minutes to play when Williams hit a layup, then got one of her three steals on the inbounds pass and hit another layup to make it 41-39.

The teams exchanged just one free throw each over the next four minutes, until Williams went baseline and hit a leaning layup with 37.9 seconds left to tie the game at 42-42.

Madison had a chance to take the lead, but a rebound off a miss by junior Danielle Hoeffner went out of bounds, giving VHS the ball with 12.9 seconds to play.

Williams walked the ball up the court, finally started her drive with less than five seconds left, split two defenders and banked in the runner with about one second left.

“I knew I could take the girl who was guarding me. That’s why I went to the goal,” Williams said.

Time expired before Madison could inbound the ball or call a timeout, and the Missy Gators started their celebration. Team members mobbed the court and Coleman jumped and pumped his fist into the air.

On the Madison bench, coach Shay Jackson was obviously upset after the game, and with good reason. Her team outrebounded the Missy Gators 30-14, converted numerous second-chance opportunities, led most of the game and had a chance to win or send it into overtime with the last shot, but couldn’t take advantage of its opportunities or hold off Williams.

“We got the ball twice in our possession in the last 40 seconds and we took two bad shots. Then we got back and were standing there looking on defense. Just looking. We had four girls watching the ball,” a flustered Jackson said. “I give credit to Mike and his team. They were a scrappy bunch … I guess heart won out in the end.”

Tiffany Jordan led Madison with 14 points, eight rebounds and four assists, while Tanelda McDonald finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.

Williams finished with a game-high 19 points for VHS. Latoya Trunell added nine, including a 3-pointer at the first-half buzzer that cut Madison’s lead to 24-23 at halftime, and Katina Cooper had seven points off the bench.

“I thought Katina Cooper came off the bench and gave us a spark. She hit some big shots,” Coleman said.

VHS never trailed by more than nine points, but Madison answered every Missy Gator spurt until the last one. Coleman said that was fine with him.

“I know the only time we had the lead was when the horn went off,” he said with a wide grin. “But that’s the best time to have the lead.”

(B) VHS 66, MC 31

The Gators opened the game with an 8-3 run and never looked back in a surprisingly easy win over Madison Central.

“I thought it was an opportunity for us to play well, and we did,” VHS coach Dellie Robinson said. Robinson added that he was surprised how easy the Gators made it look, however. “In my wildest dreams I never thought we’d beat Madison Central by 30 points.”

Demetrick Allen led all scorers with 13 points and also had eight rebounds and four blocked shots for the Gators, while Dewayne Jackson added 12 points and Jason Walker and Patrick Igbokwe each had nine. Gerrick Durrell finished with eight points and nine rebounds.

VHS (6-4) took nearly three minutes to get the first points of the game, then never trailed. The Gators outrebounded Madison 35-17 in the game and held the Jaguars to just 25.6 percent shooting.

“I thought we dominated the boards for the biggest part of the game, and that was the difference in the game,” Robinson said.

Zybamian Brown had six points and eight rebounds and Scott Stephens scored 10 points, the only player in double figures for Madison (5-4), which lost its fourth straight.

“We’re just not playing good. I don’t have anybody stepping up and playing right now,” Madison coach James Davis said. “Hats off to (VHS). They played well and deserved to win, but I know we’re better than that.”

(G) PCA 62, Central Hinds 59

E.J. Willis scored a game-high 25 points and K.K. Willis scored 16 as the Lady Eagles (8-3) downed Academy-AAA Central Hinds Tuesday night.

“We started late, but came around and were able to win it in the fourth quarter,” PCA coach Mitchell Willis said.

Brit Hudson scored 20 for Central Hinds, while Alisha Deviney and Mindy Whitehead each had 10.

(G) Newellton 77, Ferriday 69

Amanda Gales scored 36 points and the Lady Bears (2-4) forced 43 turnovers to beat Ferriday in overtime.

Gales was 10-of-11 from the free throw line, including six in overtime. Crystla Dorsey added 14.

Monique Jones scored 34 for Ferriday, but fouled out in overtime.