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Friday, Aug. 26, 2016

Tigers slip past Sikeston

Friday, January 18, 2002

METROPOLIS, Ill. -- The Sikeston Bulldogs' Superman Classic woes continued on Thursday night at Massac County High School.

The Bulldogs dropped a 49-48 decision to the Caruthersville Tigers to lose their fifth straight game in the tournament dating back to last year.

Sikeston (7-7) will play Dickson County, Tenn., on Saturday in the seventh place game at 1 p.m. Dickson lost to Webster County 67-51 in the nightcap on Thursday.

For the second straight game, the Bulldogs had offensive problems. Sikeston was just 2-of-17 from 3-point range on the night.

"Our shots weren't falling and we didn't look very confident shooting the basketball," said Sikeston head coach Gregg Holifield. "If we could've made one or two of them we probably could've gotten on a roll but we just couldn't get them to fall tonight. They had a good game-plan defensively and took us out of a lot of things we wanted to do."

Even with the poor shooting the Bulldogs had the lead at 48-47 with less than 30 seconds left. But the Tigers' Bryant Rodgers picked up a loose ball rebound and scored the eventual game-winning basket with 25 seconds remaining.

Rodgers scored a team-high 20 points with 12 rebounds.

"Bryant Rodgers controlled the whole game," said Caruthersville head coach Kevin Williams, whose team improves to 10-6. "He's just a heck of a player. I'm just glad to see us get one at the end because we've been giving them away. For pretty much three and a half quarters and I thought we played a great game. We executed and worked on running our offense. We got good shots, we played good together and we moved the ball."

The Tigers were on fire from beyond the arc, nailing 8-of-17 in the game.

"We usually have four or five guys that can put it up from three," said Williams. "We usually hit around 10 or 11 in a game."

The Tigers led 18-17 after one quarter of play. The Bulldogs came back to lead 27-23 towards the end of the second quarter but Caruthersville went on an 8-0 run to end the half to lead 31-27.

"I thought we came out in the first half and we were moving the basketball well and we were knocking down shots," said Holifield. "From that point on in the second half we started standing a little bit."

The Tigers extended their lead to seven points in the third quarter before the Bulldogs trimmed it back to 38-37 entering the fourth quarter.

The Bulldogs got down by seven early in the fourth quarter but rallied again to take a 48-47 lead when Justin Freeman made 1-of-2 free throws with 43 seconds left. The lead was short-lived as Rodgers scored the game-winner seconds later.

"Our schedule has been top-notch," said Williams. "Every team we play is a quality opponent. I'm just tickled to death to beat somebody like Sikeston. I know coach (Holifield) real well from camps and stuff and he does a heck of a job. This is a great win for us."

Sikeston's Lontas McClinton scored a game-high 23 points with 11 rebounds, including a slam dunk that left Williams impressed.

"He's a man -- that dunk he had was a big-time dunk," said Williams. "He's just got unbelievable hops."

Lavar Morgan added 14 points for the Bulldogs.

"We've just got to put ourselves into a position to play better than we are right now," said Holifield.