Jerseys cause confusion for Vicksburg

Published 11:25 pm Saturday, January 21, 2012

Due to a miscommunication between the Red Carpet Classic committee and the girls teams from Vicksburg and Velma Jackson, Saturday’s third game of the day had both teams dressed in white uniforms.

Only by seeing the green numbers of Vicksburg and the blue numbers for Velma Jackson could fans barely tell which team was which. Vicksburg coach Barbara Hartzog said it had an affect in her team’s 55-32 loss.

The Missy Gators had just eight points at the half. They made only 4 of 19 shots and had 11 turnovers.

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“We’re from Warren County and supposed to be the home team, but no one told us,” Hartzog said. “It’s hard to play when both teams are in white.”

RCC Committee chairman Travis Wayne Vance apologized afterward for the foul up.

“When both teams have to play in white, it’s not a good thing,” Vance said. “Since Vicksburg is always supposed to be the home team, even when the game is at Warren Central, someone from our committee told Velma Jackson to come in white uniforms. It was just a miscommunication. I apologized to coach (Taneka) Brown for the mix up.”

Vicksburg’s team managers went back to the school and got their road black uniforms. Several of the bench players changed jerseys with three minutes left in the second quarter. By the halftime horn, all of Vicksburg’s players were dressed in black.

The Missy Gators (9-11) had other problems as well. Star freshman guard Ama Arkoful was benched for the first 11 minutes for disciplinary reasons.

“We had to discipline Ama, but it was done and it’s over with,” Hartzog said.

Arkoful got the Missy Gators going in the second half, scoring 15 of her team-high 17 points. She also had seven rebounds and three assists. The 20-point deficit, however, was too big of a hole to escape.

Velma Jackson’s Sharlandria Winston made five 3-pointers and finished with 17 points. Mozetta Greenwood had 12 as Velma Jackson led by no less than 18 points in the second half.

Brown said her team didn’t seem fazed by the white-on-white battle.

“It was a little strange at first, but I thought my girls did a great job,” Brown said. “It was a great surprise to win a trophy.”

(B) Velma Jackson 47,

Vicksburg 45

Vicksburg rallied from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter to put the game into overtime, but couldn’t make the plays in the extra period to get a win.

Romeo Carter’s pass to an open Tre’Darius Carter came too late. Carter scored at the final buzzer in overtime, but the tying basket was waved off and the Falcons (7-13) earned a Red Carpet Classic trophy.

“It’s rough,” said Vicksburg coach Dellie C. Robinson. “We can’t seem to find a way to win. Romeo is supposed to drive to the basket. He waited too long.”

The Gators did get a lift from East Side transfer Tavares Johnson, Jr., who is the son of new Vicksburg football coach Taveres Johnson. He played all of the fourth quarter and overtime and came up with a steal late in the fourth quarter to help rally the Gators. His basket with 1:45 remaining gave Vicksburg its first lead of the game.

A basket by DeAngelo Richardson, who had 15 points, tied it at 41 with 15.2 seconds left. Vicksburg had a chance to win in regulation after a backcourt violation, but Richardson’s 15-footer was short.

Moses Greenwood and Quindary Weatherspoon had 16 points apiece for the Falcons.

Vicksburg will return to action on Tuesday night, when it hits the road to face Natchez.