Pearl River women, men eyeing district play for national berths

Pearl River women, men eyeing district play for national berths

POPLARVILLE, MS (WDAM) - This is a news release from PRCC

Pearl River Community College's MACJC-Region 23 women's and men's championship squads enter district play this weekend with hopes of capturing a berth in their respective NJCAA National Tournaments set for Nov. 17-22 (Monday through Saturday).PRCC's men's squad (12-4-1) travels to Mt. Pleasant, Tex., Friday to play for the South District title against host Northeast Texas CC (17-2-1) at 2 p.m., while its women (12-4-1) travels to Melbourne, Fla., to tackle host East Florida State CC (11-1-0) at 6 p.m. Saturday for the District H championship.

Friday's men's winner cops a berth in the NJCAA National Tournament at Prescott, Ariz., while Saturday's women's winner earns a berth at the women's nationals at Melbourne.The River squads won their state-regional titles after defeating Mississippi Gulf Coast and Hinds, respectively, Sunday in the women and men's championship bouts at Jones Junior College in Ellisville.

The two teams duplicated the twin champ feat during the 2012 season, while the Wildcat squad has claimed the men's title for three straight years. The Lady Wildcats dropped 12th-ranked and then-undefeated Jones County in Saturday's double-overtime semi-final game in a shootout scenario, while Hinds blanked Northwest Mississippi 2-0.

In the Wildcats' semi-final game with Jones County, Pearl River won 1-0 off a header by Chance Bourdene of Northeast Lauderdale High with just 36.5 seconds left in the first half. MGCCC's men shutout Hinds in their semi-final bout.In the women's game, Hinds' Haley Claiborne put the Lady Eagles up 1-0 off a goal 1:14 into the contest, but Pearl River rebounded to tie it up two minutes later off an unassisted goal by Kim Armstrong, an Ole Miss transfer who prepped at Pascagoula High.In the 35th minute, Sarah Daniels of Madison Central High gave The River the lead for good off a header from a corner kick by Haley Furlan of Bay High, while Delaney Gustafson of Ocean Springs High scored the game's final goal with 55 seconds left before the intermission.

Pearl River's men led 1-0 at the half off a free kick three minutes before the break by Eli Troutman of Ocean Springs High, but Gulf Coast's Stewart Mena tied it up with 11:24 left in regulation and that stalemate remained intact as regulation ended.

After two scoreless overtime periods, things moved to a shoot out with PRCC's Gerrad McClaurin of Ocean Springs High banging in the game-winning kick.Gulf Coast's men also earned a district berth and will face Tyler (Tex.) CC in Tyler, Tex., this weekend for a national berth (day, game time to be announced).Jack Byrd coaches the PRCC women's team, while Paul Martin coaches the men.