By Gene Phelps/NEMS Daily Journal
JACKSON – Potts Camp coach Tana Miller can confirm that watching Victoria Vivians play in person is a lot different than seeing her on tape.
“No surprises,” Miller said. “We got what we expected. Actually, being on the floor with her can be a little shocking.”
Vivians, whose coach claimed “she wasn’t sharp,” scored 43 points, grabbed 20 rebounds, had seven steals and blocked three shots Saturday to lead Scott Central to a 58-43 victory against Potts Camp in the MHSAA Class 2A state tournament semifinals.
Coaches from numerous NCAA D-I schools – Southern Miss, Mississippi State, Ole Miss and Louisville to name a few – were on hand to see Scott Central’s 6-foot junior guard/forward play.
The Lady Rebels (32-4) will play defending state champion New Site at 6:30 p.m. Thursday for the state championship.
Vivians was 14-of-35 from the field and connected on 4-of-11 NBA-range 3-pointers. She faced a variety of defensive looks from the Lady Cardinals.
“They started out in a zone, then went to a triangle-and-two,” Scott Central coach Chad Harrison said. “They guarded her with two (players) and then ran a third at her.”
Vivians is used to working for her shots.
“I can’t get too frustrated,” she said.
Potts Camp guard Jessica Peterson was one of the players assigned to hassle Vivians.
“I feel like I did a good job, but she was too fast at times,” Peterson said.
Added Moore, “She has such a quick release on her shot coming off those screens.”
Potts Camp (28-6), which trailed 26-23 at halftime, had trouble finding its offensive game. The Lady Cardinals shot 26.8 percent from the field and saw leading scorer Tenesha Woods score just six points.
Brittany Pitts scored 12 and Hayley Davis 11 to lead Potts Camp.
“We knew we had to score today, but the shots didn’t fall,” Moore said.
Scott Central turned to another shooter, guard Haley Watkins, for two crucial 3-pointers in the third quarter after Potts Camp closed the gap to 29-27. Vivians also hit two baseline bombs in a late run to give the Rebels a 45-36 lead at the end of the third.