PERKINSTON — It took a half for Mississippi Gulf Coast to knock the rust off, but once the Bulldogs did they pulled away from Baton Rouge for a 78-52 win Monday night on the first day of the MGCCC Thanksgiving Classic.
"In the second half, we just got back to doing what we had been doing, particularly offensively," Gulf Coast coach Wendell Weathers said. "We did what we needed to do. Our defense again was pretty good."
Keevon Oney (So., Gulfport/Gulfport) led the Bulldogs (4-0) with 15 points. Tafari Simms (Fr., Hamilton, Ontario/Lincoln Prep) added 12, Dillyn Neely (Fr., Biloxi/Biloxi) 11 and LaRaymond Spivery (So., Lucedale /George County) 10.
The Classic continues Tuesday when Northeast plays Baton Rouge at noon. Gulf Coast will play Southern-Shreveport at 1:45. The games will be streamed at https://livestream.com/MGCCCBulldogs/events/8454356.
MGCCC had beaten Baton Rouge 94-62 in its last game 12 days ago. Weathers feared complacency and the long layoff, and either or both contributed Monday.
Gulf Coast led by eight at halftime and used a 12-0 midway through the second half to extend the lead to 64-39 with 6:52 to play.
"I thought we got better as we went along," Weathers said. "It's a simple matter of playing hard and being consistent. When we started to move the ball and move our bodies, we started to get some good shots."
Baton Rouge falls to 1-5.
For more information on MGCCC's 10 intercollegiate athletic teams, follow @MGCCCBulldogs on Twitter and MGCCCBulldogs on Facebook, and go to mgcccbulldogs.com.