The Choctaw Central Lady Warriors seemed unchallenged as they marched through the first two rounds of the MHSAA Girls State Class 3A basketball tournament last week.

The defending champions started the week last Monday by crushing Seminary 76-24. Then on Friday, the Lady Warriors beat Franklin  County 65-34.

Choctaw Central entered the week with a 31-1 record.

Choctaw Central is seeking its seventh state championship in school history. The Lady Warriors claimed their sixth state championship in girls basketball last March when they blew out Amanda Elzy 75-42 in the finals and finished the season with a 31-3 record. The Lady Warriors have won state championships in 1996, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005 and 2017.

Next up for the Lady Warriors is Belmont High School. This game is set for Saturday at 4 p.m., and will be held at the Jackson State University.

The Lady Cardinals are the No. 1 team out of Region 1-1A. They opened the tournament with a 65-15 win over Houston. In the second round, they defeated North Panola 57-47. They currently stand at 25-4.

“They are well disciplined and well coached,” Choctaw Central Coach Bill Smith said. “They have one big girl and the rest are guards. They are very strong under the boards and will get after you.”

The winner advances to the semifinals which will be played next Wednesday at the Mississippi Coliseum. The game starts at 9 a.m., and will be against winner of the quarterfinal game between Choctaw County and Jefferson Davis County.

The quarterfinal games on the other side of the bracket have Velma Jackson against Forest, and Humphreys County against Kossuth. Those winners play in the semifinal game which will follow the 9 a.m. game.

The semifinal winners will meet Saturday at 1 p.m. in the Coliseum to decide the Class 3A state championship.

“We are really playing well right now,” Smith said. “Hopefully we are peaking at the right time. Everyone has been pulling their weight and hopefully they will continue to do so.”

 

Lady Warriors 65

Franklin County 34

The Lady Warriors built up a big lead in the first half against Franklin County.

The Lady Warriors jumped out to a 20-7 lead in the first quarter. They outscored the Lady Bulldogs 23-8 in the second quarter and led 43-15 at the half. With the issue all but settled, the Lady Warriors outscored Franklin County 22-19 in the second half.

Darien Tubby, who was named the C-Spire Player of the Year in last year’s state tournament, led with 14 points while Lachrisha Williams added 12. Kyannah Grant and Meloney Thomas both scored nine points.