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From Staff Reports
JACKSON â€“ For the third straight game, Starkville played in a down-to-the-wire basketball game. For the third straight time, the Jackets came up short.
Starkville lost to Vicksburg 48-44 Monday at the Martin Luther King Classic held at Lanier High School.
"When you play in close games, every possession is a big possession," said Jackets head coach Greg Carter. "We just haven't been able to close games out the way we need to and we haven't been able to make free throws."
Starkville (11-5, 2-1 in Class 6A, Region 2) continued its recent string of struggles from the charity stripe on Monday, making just five out of 15 free-throw attempts.
With the 10 misses, the Jackets have now missed 48 combined free throws in their last three games.
In all three of those contests, SHS has lost by four points or less, falling 58-56 to both Grenada and Tupelo last week before Monday's defeat.
"I don't know what it is," said Carter. "It's the first time I've ever had a team that didn't make free throws over a three-game stretch."
Still, Starkville once again had a chance to win Monday. The Jackets led 15-13 after the first quarter, went into halftime tied at 23 and headed into the fourth quarter up 35-34.
Vicksburg outscored the Jackets 14-9 in the final period to earn the win.
Jacolby Mobley led Starkville in scoring with 17 points.
Gavin Ware tallied 14 points, six rebounds and four blocks for the Jackets.
Starkville returns to action today at West Point immediately following a 6 p.m. girls game.
Carter says both he and his team has to forget the last three games and focus on the task currently at hand.
"All we're focused on now is West Point," said Carter. "That's all I'm talking about is West Point. You can't look ahead and you can't look back."