Picayune basketball teams fall against Hattiesburg in district opener

Published 7:00 am Thursday, January 11, 2018

PICAYUNE — Hattiesburg High School proved to be too much for the Lady Maroon Tide to handle, winning Tuesday’s night’s game 52-24 in both team’s district opener.

For Picayune (8-9, 0-1 Region 7-5A), Alanna Smith led the team with nine points, Kylah Walker followed with five and Shamiah Bridges finished with four.

“Hattiesburg is really athletic, they can shoot the ball well from the outside and if you make mistakes, they will punish you,” Picayune girls Head Basketball Coach Toby Bush said. “I believe we can play better than we played tonight but give credit to Hattiesburg, they played well and capitalized off our mistakes.”

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The Lady Tigers jumped to an early lead after the first quarter of the game at 14-5. The team increased its lead to 28-10 by halftime.

At the beginning of the third quarter, Camille Culpepper scored off a two-pointer for the Lady Maroon Tide and after Hattiesburg answered with a score of their own, Kylah Walker added three points for Picayune after successfully completing a three-point play.

The Lady Maroon Tide trailed 32-15 with 3:52 left in the game.

The Lady Tigers dashed any hopes of a Picayune comeback after finishing the third quarter on a 9-1 run.

Heading into the last quarter of the game, the Lady Maroon Tide trailed 41-16.

In the fourth quarter, Bridges scored three points, Walker and Holt scored two and Smith added one for the Lady Maroon Tide.

Culpepper, Holt and Ashlyn Bell finished with two points each for Picayune and the team will travel to Carriere Friday night to take on the Lady Devils. Tip-off will be at 6 p.m.

“We have a lot of work to do and unfortunately we only have two days until we face PRC, which is going to be a hard-fought game,” Bush said. “Friday is a rivalry game and it’ll come down to whoever wants it more. Records and statistics go out the window and hopefully we bounce back and perform better than tonight because PRC will not take it easy on us and will come out with everything they have.”

—Hattiesburg 53, Picayune 37: The Maroon Tide was unable to overcome an early deficit and lost 53-37 against Hattiesburg in the team’s district opener Tuesday night.

Marvun Arnold scored 17 points, Jordan Griffith had seven and Delrae Smith added four to Picayune’s side of the scoreboard.

At the beginning of the game, both teams traded baskets resulting in neither team being able to pull away from the other.

But by the end of the first quarter Hattiesburg held a 13-12 lead.

It was during the second quarter when the Tigers players were able to find their groove on the court, outscoring Picayune 16-4.

For the Maroon Tide, the team was unable to put the ball through the basket until Arnold scored from a mid-range jumper with two minutes left in the second quarter.

Griffith was able to add two more points for Picayune with less than a minute left in the second quarter.

After leading 29-16, Hattiesburg started the third quarter on an 11-0 run and sealed the win. Before the end of the quarter, Arnold scored six points for the Maroon Tide.

In the last quarter of the game, Brian Bickham, Arnold, Jalen Hall, Griffith, Vandell McGill and Kobe Jones scored for Picayune, boosting the team to a total of 15 points. The Maroon Tide (13-5, 0-1 Region 7-5A) will travel to Pearl River Central High School to take on the Blue Devils Friday night.

Tip-off will be at 7:30 p.m.

“We’re neighbors… and they’re a really good team, probably one of the best teams in recent years and it’s going to be a big challenge for us,” Picayune Head boys basketball Coach Kelton Thompson said.