In a battle of two squads that mirrored each other in many ways, when the dust settled the Choctaws stood as the victors, improving to 4-1 overall on the season by winning 72-62.
"Mitchell has a good team, they're very talented and well-coached," said DC head coach Derek McCord. "We knew it was going to be a battle and we would have to play well. I thought our guys really stepped it up, especially late in the game."
Dyer County connected on 21-of-44 from the field compared to a 25-of-52 clip for Mitchell, but the biggest difference in the contest came down to free throws. The Choctaws made it to the line 36 times and converted 28, while the Tigers took 13 shots and sank eight.
Though DC held an advantage at the end of every period, a talented Mitchell squad put the Choctaws to the test from the beginning to the end. However, when your squad features one of the best players in the country in Robert Hubbs III, the odds of being able to answer the toughest of challenges go up, way up.
Over the weekend at the Martin Shootout, Hubbs found his zone, finishing the two-day event with 66 points that included 15 dunks. On Tuesday, Hubbs added to both totals and the Choctaws won their third straight.
Though the talented senior usually garners the attention of the opposition's best defender, and sometime best defenders, Tuesday was an example of simply being better than the best the opposition had to offer.
Hubbs finished with 31 points and nine rebounds that included a 13-of-15 performance at the charity stripe, as well as six thunderous dunks with the final one coming at the buzzer to put a rim-rattling exclamation on the 10-point victory.
Teammates Malik Pugh and Markeston Bostic ended the game in double figures as well, finishing with 15 and 10, respectively. DeAundre Gilton added eight points, while P.J. Miller and LaMarcus Mosley chipped in with four points apiece.
DC forced 21 turnovers during the contest while committing 24, an area McCord knows must improve as the first district game of the season approaches on Friday at North Side in Jackson.
"We've got to do a better job of taking care of the ball, no doubt about it, but this was a good win for us against a very talented team," said McCord.
After playing North Side on Friday, the Choctaws will travel to Rector, Ark. to face Truman, Ark. at 3 p.m. on Saturday in the Rector Hall of Fame Shootout.