ELLISVILLE – The “Catfight on the Court” lived up to expectations.
The 16th-ranked Jones County Junior College Bobcats used an 11-0 run in the first half and went on to defeat the 14th-rated Pearl River Community College Wildcats 70-64 Thursday night before an estimated 2,000 fans here at A.B. Howard Gymnasium.
The victory keeps the Bobcats unbeaten at 11-0. JCJC tops the MACJC South Division at 4-0.
In the women's game, the Lady Bobcats took a 15-point lead midway through the first half and held off PRCC, 66-61.
The JCJC women are now 9-3 overall, 3-1 in division play.
The Bobcats will host Meridian Community College on Tuesday. The women's game begins at 5:30 p.m., followed by the men's game at 7:30 p.m. Both games will air on www.jcjc.tv.
Pearl River travels to Mississippi Gulf Coast on Tuesday.
Bobcats 70, Wildcats 64
Sophomore point guard Bryce Jones was, once again, instrumental in the Bobcats' victory.
Jones led the team with 24 points and made two big scoring plays back-to-back in the game's final eight minutes.
With the Bobcats leading 57-49, Jones made a drive to the goal and somehow scooped in a layup at the 7:48 mark. After PRCC scored, Jones followed that up with a 3-pointer from the right wing to give the Bobcats a 62-51 lead with 6:53 to play.
JCJC took its longest lead of the night when Rodrigus Palmer slammed home a breakaway dunk to give the Bobcats a 68-55 lead with 3:50 left.
Pearl River fought back and got within 68-64 with 20.8 seconds to play when Cortez Mitchell hit a 3-pointer, but JCJC's Andrew Riley made two free throws with 19.3 seconds remaining to end the scoring.
The Wildcats started the game quickly, taking a 10-6 lead with 15:51 left in the first half when Darrlyn Willis scored.
But the Bobcats then took the lead for good with the 11-0 run, taking a 17-10 lead with 12:45 left on a Christopher White basket. JCJC's longest lead of the first half was 25-15 with 10:16 showing when Otis Harvey made a 3-pointer. But Pearl River closed the gap to 38-35 at halftime.
The Wildcats got within 44-42 with 14:35 remaining when Laderrick Scott made a free throw, but that was as close as they would get.
After Jones' 24 points, Bryce Perry added 12 and Harvey had eight.
Willis, Malik Clements and Mitchell had 10 each for Pearl River.
The Wildcats are now 12-1 overall, 3-1 in the division.
Lady Bobcats 66, Lady Wildcats 61
With the game knotted at 6-6 early, JCJC went on a 17-2 run to take control.
Alyson Johnson's basket off a Taylor Baudoin assist put the Lady Bobcats ahead, 23-8 at the 10:29 mark. JCJC's longest lead of the game came at 32-16 with 4:49 left in the first half when Terrica Williams scored.
The Lady Bobcats led 38-27 at halftime.
A Williams' basket off a rebound gave JCJC a 46-33 lead with 16:21 left. But Pearl River went on a 14-3 run and closed the lead to 49-47 with 10:31 to play when Tamera Williams made a 3-pointer from the left wing.
JCJC then had a 12-3 run of its own and went back ahead 61-50 with 6:17 remaining when Starla Daggans made a 10-footer.
The Lady Wildcats would have another rally and get within 63-61 with 38.2 seconds to play when Essence Pulliam scored off a rebound.
But the Lady Bobcats got an old-fashioned 3-point play from Baudoin off an assist by Kadie Parker with 11.7 seconds left to seal it.
Daggans had 20 points for JCJC, while Baudoin added 15. Parker had eight steals, while Baudoin and Williams had six rebounds each. Daggans had three assists.
Shaniqua Magee led Pearl River, 6-4 overall and 1-3 in the division, with 12 points.
JCJC was 24-of-60 from the field, including 0-of-9 from 3-point range, for 40 percent. The Lady Bobcats were 18-of-26 from the free throw line.
Pearl River was 23-of-54 from the floor, including 4-of-13 from 3-point range, for 43 percent. The Lady Wildcats were 11-of-17 from the free throw line.
JCJC outrebounded Pearl River, 34-29. The Lady Bobcats committed 26 turnovers, compared to 18 for PRCC.