But gradually over the course of the second half of the game, the Katz began to pull away and knocked off the Bears 58-39.
Down by 10 at the half, 26-16, the Bears got off to a slow start in the third period and were victims of an 11-0 run that saw Melbourne open up enough breathing room to lead 39-24 heading into the final frame.
However, the first period of the third meeting of the year between the two squads was hotly contested.
Melbourne jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead behind hoops from Spencer Caraway (13 points), Lee Lewis (17 points) and Dalton Grigg (eight points).
But Mammoth Spring fired back with five points, including a trey, from Seth Godwin (15 points) to keep the Katz from running away with things.
Trevor Vincent (13 points) tossed in four points late in the first to help lock the score at 10-all after one.
Chase Massey (16 points) found his stroke in the second period and sank Melbourne's first four points of the second to break the tie.
Then, at the 3:29 mark, the Bearkatz ripped off a 12-2 run that pushed Melbourne on top 26-14.
Godwin drained a jumper right before the halftime buzzer that pulled Mammoth Spring within 10, 26-16, at intermission.
As it turns out, that would be about as close as the Bears would get in the second half.
Vincent scored Mammoth Spring's first five points of the third, chipping into Melbourne's lead and pulling the Bears within seven points.
Then, Melbourne got rolling.
Massey blasted a triple, Lewis sank a jumper and Grigg hit a layup, starting an 11-0 burst for Melbourne.
Wes Davis (four points) stopped the run with a charity toss and Caleb Brown (five points) hit a shot near the buzzer, but Mammoth Spring was in a 39-24 hole after three.
The Bears did get within 10 points of the Katz again in the fourth, but Melbourne refused to give any more ground than that and knocked Mammoth Spring out of the tourney by the count of 58-39.
Colton Goetting tallied two points for the Bears.
Derek Baird and Abram Qualls logged two points apiece for Melbourne.
In first round action on Dec. 10, Mammoth Spring topped the Midland Mustangs 49-36.
Godwin paced the Bears with 16 points, while Davis had 11 and Brown 10. Vincent finished with eight points and Goetting posted four points.
The Bearkatz opened play in the tournament with a 53-45 victory over the Calico Rock Pirates Dec. 8.
Massey led the way with 14 points, while Spencer Caraway followed close with 13 and Lewis added 12.