MCC holds off late charge, tops Macomb

MCC's Shalix Hines
MCC's Shalix Hines

HARRISON, Arkansas - The MCC women's basketball team shook off some cold shooting and pulled away late to defeat Macomb Community College 64-54 in the opening round of the NJCAA Division 2 national tournament Tuesday. 

The Tribunes (27-3) outscored the Monarchs 12-3 over the final 4:45 to pull away and advance to Wednesday's quarterfinals, where they will take on either Guilford Tech or St. Louis at 7 p.m.

Monroe led by 10 heading to the fourth before Macomb responded with an 11-2 run to cut the lead to 52-51 with 4:45 left. 

Lanay Rodney then rebounded a missed MCC 3 and hit a layup while getting fouled. Rodney completed the 3-point play to make it 55-51. 

Shalix Hines followed with a deep 3 late in the shot clock, and Torrie Cash took a backdoor feed from Rodney for another basket to make it 60-51 with just over two minutes remaining. The Monroe defense then clamped down on Macomb and hit just enough free throws down the stretch to complete the win.

Hines was a huge spark for Monroe. The freshman point guard came off the bench to hit 7-of-10 shots and score a team-high 17 points. Rodney finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds, while Cash chipped in with 11 points.