PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast beat Copiah-Lincoln 66-57 Monday night, giving the Lady Bulldogs their first win over the Lady Wolves since 2013.
More importantly, it got them back into the hunt for a playoff spot.
"That was big for us," Gulf Coast coach Hope Adams said. "I told them we're not out of this thing. We had six more ballgames left, and we're trying to get into that tournament. They came out, executed the game plan and we overcame some adversity today. They did well, I'm proud of them."
Shelli Thigpen (So., Wylie, Texas/Wylie) led Gulf Coast with 13 points, and Breannah McCullah (So., Edwards/Raymond) and Kayla Simmons (Fr., Brandon/Brandon) each had 12.
Gulf Coast improves to 9-7 overall, 5-4 in the MACJC South. The Lady Bulldogs are tied with Co-Lin (14-4) and East Central for third. Those teams are one game back of Pearl River. The top four teams in the division advance to the state tourney.
The Lady Bulldogs held Co-Lin without a field goal for the first 7:29 of play and led all the way until a 7-1 spurt gave the Lady Wolves a 57-55 lead with 2:52 to play.
Amber Sutton (Fr., Jackson/Madison Central) buried a 3-pointer on the next possession, setting Gulf Coast off on an 11-0 run to close out the game.
"Sometimes, we're having a hard time playing through," Adams said. "But they stayed locked in, and we got through a big moment as a team."
Gulf Coast scored the first eight points of the game and led 10-1 before Co-Lin hit its first free throw. The Lady Bulldogs allowed only five points in the quarter and led by 10.
"We wanted to get into that 1-3-1, and control their perimeter players," Adams said. "We wanted to play big and control the boards. When that ball went to the wing, we matched up and kind of confused them a little bit. We executed the defense well."
The Lady Bulldogs led by four at the end of the second and third quarters before the nail-biting fourth. The late run gave them their first win over Co-Lin since a 63-58 win on Dec. 5, 2013.
Gulf Coast returns to action Thursday when Southwest visits Perkinston. Tipoff at the Weathers/Wentzell Center is at 5:30 p.m. The game will be streamed at http://livestream.com/MGCCCBulldogs.
For more information on MGCCC's 10 intercollegiate athletic teams, follow @MGCCCBulldogs on Twitter and MGCCCBulldogs on Facebook, and go to mgcccbulldogs.com.
Sports Information Director
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College