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Sunday, July 21, 2019

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Trojans get wins and control of 5A District

Trojans get wins and control of 5A District

Gazette Sports Reports

The road to the District 7-5A Championship now runs through Mathews.

The Central Lafourche boys’ basketball team had a huge week, beating KIPP Booker T. Washington on Tuesday, then getting their biggest win of the season – a 62-56 road win at rival H.L. Bourgeois – one of the top teams in Class 5A.

The Trojans are rolling. They’ve now won six games in a row. They are a half-game out of first place in district, but have a bit of an edge because they beat Thibodaux, the district leader in a head-to-head game earlier this season.

Coach Mark Sanders said he thinks his boys are playing their best ball at the right time. That matters a lot in Class 5A hoops.

“We are working hard, getting better and making progression,” Sanders said. “I am proud of the kids. They battle. They keep the right mindset and they do the right things.”

Never was that more apparent than against the Braves on Thursday night.

H.L. Bourgeois beat Central Lafourche in Matthews earlier this season – one of two district losses the Trojans have on the year. But this time, Central Lafourche got the revenge, erasing a 1-point deficit at the end of the third quarter to secure an emotional, hard-fought win in a chippy game.

The game was tied at 52 with 2 minutes to go, but the Trojans made all the plays late, going on a 5-0 spurt with free throws and defense to take a 57-52 lead with a minute to go.

The Braves made a surge, getting fouled on a 3-point shot, but the Trojans never buckled, handling pressure defense late and making foul shots to secure the road win.

Guards Marvin Robertson and Jamiree Williams were huge in the game, scoring 22 points and 21 points, respectively.

The Trojans shot 77 percent at the line in the win.

“The kids battled. This is not an easy place to play and that is a really good basketball team we are up against,” Sanders said. “I am proud of our effort and the fight that we showed.”

The Trojans returned to action on Tuesday at home against Destrehan. No score was available at press-time on Tuesday morning.

The team will travel to take on Terrebonne on Friday. All the matchups for the rest of the season are key because the Trojans are currently No. 18 in the LHSAA power rankings. They need to get into the Top 16 before the end of the season to host a first-round game.

That this is even a possibility is amazing for the team, considering that for most of the season before district play, the Trojans weren’t even in the Top 32 and were at risk to miss the playoffs altogether.


Lady Tarpons get big win

There are three premier girls’ basketball teams in District 7-4A: South Lafourche, Ellender and South Terrebonne.

The Lady Tarpons lost to Ellender last week, but rebounded in style on Saturday, smothering South Terrebonne to the tune of a 44-22 win. The Lady Tarpons also beat Assumption (69-37) and Vandebilt (81-29) in an unblemished week.

With the victories, South Lafourche improved to 19-8 on the season, jumping up to No. 3 in the Class 4A Power Rankings.

“We really challenged ourselves with a tough non-district schedule and that was to get us ready for district and the playoff competition,” Lady Tarpons coach Rainie Terrebonne said earlier this season. “Our kids like to play in those games and it brings out the best in everyone.”

That winning intensity showed through on Saturday with a swarming defensive effort. South Lafourche smothered South Terrebonne badly in the game, holding the Lady Gators without a point for the entire first quarter and then to just 8 points at halftime – an 18-8 advantage.

In the second half, South Lafourche’s defense stayed strong, but the team’s offense woke up, surging out to a 38-16 advantage heading into the final eight minutes.

The Lady Gators tried to battle back late, but never could – in part because they couldn’t crack South Lafourche’s tenacious defense.

Senior Traya Bruce led the Lady Tarpons with 16 points in the win. Senior post Victorianna Nelson added 11 points in the win.

While the Lady Tarpons are playing for seeding, the Tarpon boys’ basketball team is playing for a bid. The Tarpons went 1-1 this past week, beating Vandebilt 58-30, then falling to Assumption 68-56 on Friday night in Galliano.

With the week, the Tarpons are now the No. 34 seed in Class 4A – two spots away from being in the bracket.

But there is good news. The Tarpons have plenty chances to earn power points to jump up in the coming weeks.

Both the boys’ and girls’ take on Morgan City on Tuesday (no score at press-time) and E.D. White on Thursday.