PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast led for virtually all the second half, but No. 9 Jones County pulled out a 90-89 victory Thursday night.
The Bobcats (20-1, 11-1 MACJC South) erased a 15-point lead in the last 9:33 to down the Bulldogs (16-5, 8-4) at the Weathers/Wentzell Center. It was the first MGCCC home loss of the season.
"We played really, really well," Gulf Coast coach Wendell Weathers said. "They're not ninth in the county and 20-1 for no reason. Tonight, it just came down to a bounce here and a bounce there."
Gulf Coast still clinched an MACJC Tournament berth when East Central defeated Pearl River 87-80 later in the evening.
Zach Parker (6-2, 185, So., Biloxi/Biloxi) led Gulf Coast with 27 points. Davion Cole-Johnson (6-4, 210, So., Pike/Glen Ellyn, Ill.) and Winston Morgan (5-10, 170, So., East Catholic/Manchester, Conn.) finished with 20 each.
Tedrian Brisco (6-5, 195, So., Porter's Chapel/Vicksburg) added 12.
Parker and Morgan had four 3-pointers each, and the Bulldogs made two more long-range shots than the Bobcats. But JCJC made seven of its eight 3s in the second half to erode the Gulf Coast lead.
The Bulldogs had only five points in the last six minutes.
"Our offense got a little bit stagnant down the stretch," Weathers said. "I think we did too much standing. I don't know why we do that."
Cole-Johnson had a critical turnover with 1:25 to play, and JCJC took its first lead of the second half with 36.3 seconds to play. A layup after a turnover made it 89-88.
Cole-Johnson made one of two free throws with 14.4 seconds left, and Jones got to the line with 1.7 left and got the game-winner.
"It's just like the first game," Weathers said. "We played really well again, but it just wasn't meant to be tonight. I'm proud of the way we played. If we can continue to play like that, we'll be fine."
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