Rolling out the Red Carpet: Local teams drop five out of six games at Red Carpet Classic

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 27, 2003

{1/26/03}While other Vicksburg teams struggled in the Red Carpet Classic Saturday, the Warren Central Vikings saved the day with an 85-65 win over Neshoba Central in the last game of the afternoon.

The Vikings were the only Warren County team to win in the six-game tournament held at WC. St. Aloysius was swept by Wesson in the first two games of the day, and Yazoo County handled Vicksburg.

The Vikings kept the local teams from being shut out with a big second half against Neshoba Central.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

“Anytime you can outdo Vicksburg and St. Al in the same day that’s a good effort on your part,” WC coach Preston Wilson said.

Dewayne Washington led the Vikings (15-7) with 24 points and nine rebounds, and was selected as the team’s MVP. Ronnie Jones added 23 points, and Chi Chi Ezekwe had 18 points.

It was the second straight game that Washington, Jones and Ezekwe have scored in double figures.

Washington had a game-high 22 points, Ezekwe added 20, and Jones scored 17 in an 80-74 victory over Simmons on Friday night.

Right from the tip-off, the game against Neshoba Central on Saturday was a game of streaks until Warren Central settled down in the second half and pulled away.

The Vikings committed twelve turnovers in the first half and led 42-36 at the break, but had only five turnovers in the second half and outscored Neshoba Central 43-29 in the last two periods.

Ezekwe hit a 3-pointer from the top of the arc at the third quarter buzzer to cap a period that saw Warren Central increase its lead from six points to 16, 64-48.

“When we went in at half we just had to make some mental adjustments. We had the physical effort but we were making a few mental mistakes that were causing turnovers for them,” Wilson said.

Anthony Pickens scored 21 points and was named game MVP for Neshoba Central.

(G) Neshoba Central 69, WC 46

India Backstrom led Neshoba Central with 23 points and nine rebounds as the Lady Rockets built a 14-point halftime lead before going on to beat Warren Central.

Krystal Wells added 19 points for Neshoba Central, which is led by former St. Aloysius coach Noah Hamilton.

The game got out of hand quickly as Neshoba Central outscored Warren Central 20-8 in the first quarter.

Cookie Johnson, who was selected the game’s MVP, scored 14 points and had eight rebounds.

Anika Carter added 10 points for Neshoba Central.

Warren Central (11-12) played tough in the second and third quarters, being outscored by only two points in each period.

Neshoba Central built on its lead, however, outscoring Warren Central 20-13 in the fourth quarter.

Saleda Montgomery was second in scoring for Warren Central with six points.

Warren Central will host Wingfield on Tuesday before traveling to face Vicksburg in a key division game on Saturday morning at 11:30.

The winner of the Warren Central-Vicksburg game will likely earn either the No. 2 or No. 3 seed in the Division 4-5A tournament, and avoid playing tournament host Natchez in the first round.

The division tournament begins Feb. 11 at Natchez.