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Natchez High Bulldogs success on road, advances to second round

PASCAGOULA — Natchez High Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs basketball teams began the first round of the MHSAA playoffs on the road.

The Bulldogs won 63-58 over the Pascagoula High Panthers (Region 8, No. 2 seed) on Tuesday night.

The Bulldogs are 7-6 away from Natchez High this season. Before Tuesday night’s game, the Bulldogs lost two road games in a row.

David Haywood, Natchez High boys’ basketball head coach, said the Bulldogs have a motto on the back of their warm ups.

“The motto is: ‘Whoever, wherever and whenever,” Haywood said. “I just want the players to get into that mind frame. No matter who we play or where we’re playing, we’re going to put our best foot forward and see what happens.”

In the 13th road game of the season, KeDarius Stampley led the Bulldogs with 20 points and 14 rebounds. James Singleton was second in points for Natchez with 19 points and Cam’Ron Bailey finished third with 17 points.

The 14th road game of the season for Natchez High is the second round of the MHSAA Class 5A playoffs against the Brookhaven High School Panthers, the Region 5 winners.

The last game between the two teams was on Jan. 25, 2018. The Panthers won 69-63 in overtime over the Bulldogs.

“I look at Brookhaven and I know their well coached and always have great athletes,” Haywood said. “Their fans get behind them real well and I know it will be a packed gymnasium.”

Tip off for the second round playoff game is 7:30 p.m. Friday at Brookhaven High School.

Natchez girls 44,

Gautier High 36

GAUTIER — Natchez High Lady Bulldogs earned a road victory on Monday night and won 44-36 over the Gautier High Lady Gators.

The Lady Bulldogs are 3-6 on the road this season and ride a three-game road winning streak into the second round of the MHSAA Class 5A playoffs.

“Playing on the road is always tougher than playing at home,” Alphaka Moore, Natchez High girls’ head coach, said. “It’s very tough playing on the road but we try our best to bring as much support as possible so it doesn’t feel like we’re away from home.”

Kelsey McNeal led the Lady Bulldogs with 21 points and second was Kelvonda Arburnot with nine points. Moore said McNeal is a tough competitor.

“I remember watching McNeal as a youngster play and she gave 100% on the court,” Moore said. “Her success comes from effort. She has made a name for herself.”

Tip off for the 10th road game of the season for Natchez is 6 p.m. Friday at Brookhaven High School.