The East Jackson boys' basketball team finished with the No. 5 seed for the Region 8-AAA tournament after a 72-70 home loss to Monroe Area Friday (Jan. 31).
The Eagles (14-10, 5-7 Region 8-AAA) got 28 points from Makayl Rakestraw and 27 points from Jimmie Jackson but could not get a shot to fall at the end to lift them to a victory in their regular-season finale.
"The boys battled," East Jackson coach Jarvis Smith said. "It was a playoff atmosphere. The gym was a playoff atmosphere."
East Jackson will face Monroe Area in a rematch Tuesday (Feb. 4) at 5:30 p.m. at Franklin County. The winner will move on to the 8-AAA semifinals and secure a spot in the state tournament.
East Jackson fell behind 72-70 with 13 seconds remaining in the game after a free throw from Monroe Area. The Eagles got the ball to R.J. White on their final possession for an open 3-pointer, but the shot rimmed out at the buzzer.
Smith said rebounding was a factor in the loss.
"We got dominated on the board in key moments," he said.