Kemper County’s Timothy McElroy tries to block a shot against Louisville on Tuesday night. Devon McClendon (23) and Sheddrick Granger (12) look on.

Photo by Jacob Robertson
Kemper County’s Timothy McElroy tries to block a shot against Louisville on Tuesday night. Devon McClendon (23) and Sheddrick Granger (12) look on. Photo by Jacob Robertson
By Steve Swogetinsky

Kemper County Messenger



The Kemper County Wildcats dropped a couple of close games this past week in prep basketball action. The Wildcats fell 65-56 to Louisville and then lost 79-75 at Northeast Lauderdale.

The Wildcats, who stand at 0-4, were set to be back in action Tuesday when they host Louisville.

“We are going to put some practice time in during the holidays,” coach Daryl Osby said. “Our football players have joined us and they are making the transition right now. We are going to practice Monday and Tuesday.  I will open the gym on Saturday so people can come in and work on their individual skills. And we are going to scrimmage on Sunday afternoon.”

The Wildcats came close in both games last week but in each, were plagued by one bad quarter that left them playing catch-up the rest of the way.

gainst Louisville, Kemper County trailed 14-12 at the end of the first quarter. The Wildcats would outscored Louisville 17-9 and led 29-23 at the half.

Louisville outscored the Wildcats 24-7 in the third quarter and carried a 47-36 lead into the final quarter. The Wildcats battled back in the fourth quarter, outscoring Louisville 20-18 but the matter was settled in Louisville’s favor.

Delance Gillespie led the Wildcats with 19 points while Davion McClendon added 15 points and Timothy Mcelroy scored 12. The Northeast Lauderdale Trojans took a 22-10 lead in the first quarter. The Wildcats outscored the Trojans 20-18 in the second quarter and led 40-30 at the half.

The Wildcats continued to chase the Trojans throughout the second half. Kemper County outscored the Wildcats 22-21 in the third quarter and trailed 61-51 heading to the final eight minutes of play. Kemper County closed the gap more in the fourth quarter, outpointing the Trojans 23-18. But that wasn’t enough as they fell short.

 Northeast Lauderdale had 36 free throw attempts to Kemper County’s 16. The Wildcats were called for 30 fouls while NEL was called for 15.

McElroy led with 19 points while McClendon and Gillespie both scored 16.

“In both games, we had one bad quarter and fell behind,” Osby said. “We have got to get where we can play complete four quarters. It’s going to take a little while to put everything together but by January and February, we should be very competitive.”

The Kemper County Lady Wildcats continue to be a work in progress as they fell to 0-4 with losses to a Louisville 59-9 and Northeast Lauderdale 75-18. No other information was available.