THE POST-SIGNAL / Chris Quebedeaux
Crowley High’s Marquarius Thorne goes up for two of his game-high 28 points in the Gents’ 58-56 victory over Cecilia on Tuesday.
Gents hold off Cecilia; Ladies fall in overtime
With the shots not falling, especially early on, the Crowley Gents decided to go toe-to-toe with the Cecilia Bulldogs in the paint Tuesday in their second game of the Sacred Heart of Ville Platte Tournament.
That decision paid huge dividends for the Gents as they scored nearly 90 percent of their points under the rim and pulled off a 58-56 victory over the Class 4A Bulldogs in the best game of the tournament so far.
“They (Cecilia) was daring us to shoot it but I told the kids, if they don’t feel comfortable doing that, drive, and we did that tonight,” said CHS coach Jason Lewis, whose team improved to 3-0 with the victory.
Marquarius Thorne gave the Bulldogs fits the entire night and finished with a monster game. He scored a game-high 28 points and pulled down a season-high 18 rebounds for the Gents.
“Marquarius was really good around the rim and that kept us in the game,” said Lewis of his senior forward. “He’s had some ups and downs but he’s working through it and really playing at a high level right now.”
Thorne and fellow forward Braeden Board led a rally in the first half after Cecilia bolted out on a 12-0 run to start the game.
Crowley’s dynamic duo combined for 13 points to end the frame and then helped the Gents go on a 10-2 run to start the second period.
Cecilia answered with another run after that, outscoring the Gents’ 14-0 over the final four minutes of the half when Thorne and Board were each sidelined due to foul trouble.
“We put ourselves in a situation where our two bigs were in foul trouble and then we went like four minutes without scoring,” said Lewis, whose team trailed 31-23 at the break. “But the second half was huge for us. We weathered the storm and climbed right back in it.”
With Board still on the bench, Thorne scored nine points in the third quarter and Ronderick Nelson added eight, including two 3-pointers, to give the Gents a 44-40 lead.
“Ronderick stepped up big for us and he hit some big shots for us,” said Lewis.
Cecilia took a 54-53 lead with just over two minutes remaining but the Gents hit three big free throws down the stretch to seal the victory in the closing seconds.
“The kids stuck with the game plan and never quit,” said Lewis. “We hit some key free throws at the end and that was very big because that’s usually our downfall.
Nelson and Board joined Thorne in double figures with 15 and 11 points, respectively. Rudolph Smith and Bryan Montgomery each had two points.
Ladies lose in overtime
The Crowley Ladies battled it out with Pine Prairie for four quarters and needed an extra period before falling short in overtime on a layup at the buzzer, 39-37.
“We played hard, we really did,” said CHS coach Alton Allen. “We had our chances but turnovers and free throws really hurt us.”
The Ladies turned the ball over nine times and went just 4-for-10 from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter and the overtime period. They led by as many as seven in the fourth quarter with just under three minutes remaining and had a six-point advantage with two minutes left in overtime.
The Lady Panthers went to the free throw line for eight shots in the first half. They shot 18 free throws alone in the fourth quarter to inch back into the game.
“We started getting whistled for fouls and then they just started to pile up,” said Allen. “But we had our chance to put the game away and we didn’t.
Taylor Perkins drained three 3-pointers and led the Ladies with 19 points. Tyzanekia Price added five points, Myraneika Lastrapes and Kentaysia Wilridge each scored four points and Caithin Dregin and Akia Richardson each had three.