Eagles thwart Georgetown’s upset bid

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 3, 1999

MICHAEL KIRAL / L’Observateur / March 3, 1999

RESERVE – Reserve Christian rallied from a fourth quarter deficit to defeat Georgetown, 73-65, in the Eagles’ first ever playoff game in the Louisiana High School Athletic Association Friday night.

Reserve Christian (28-15), the District 13-B champions, traveled to Episcopal of Acadiana for the regional playoffs last night. Episcopaldefeated Starks, 48-46, Friday. The winner will face the winner ofBethany Christian-Pine Prairie in the quarterfinals. Georgetown, theDistrict 6-B runners-up, finished the season at 19-19.

Reserve Christian took a 53-50 lead into the fourth quarter. ButGeorgetown opened the final period with a 6-0 run, taking a 56-53 lead with 6:42 left on a drive down the lane by Cole Bruce.

Reserve Christian answered with a 10-0 run of its own. Eric McClain tiedthe score with a 3-pointer from the top of the key with six minutes remaining. Both teams turned the ball over on their next two possessionsbefore McClain found Jared Simoneaux for a hook shot in the paint, giving the Eagles a 58-56 lead with 5:10 left.

McClain followed with three free throws. Two possessions later, LarrySmith buried a short jumper from the left baseline to make it 63-56. Aturnaround jumper by Matt McGee and a steal and layup by Aaron Vogel built the lead to 69-58.

A 3-pointer by Trey Morgan from the left wing and a drive by Bruce brought the Bulldogs to within seven. But Vogel and McClain combined tohit three free throws down the stretch to preserve the win.

“This is a big moment for them,” Reserve Christian coach Timmy Byrd said of the team’s first playoff victory. “They were able to come back frombeing down. Things were not going our way but they showed a lot ofcharacter in coming back and taking care of business at the end. I’m proudof the effort and effort was what was needed in a game of this type.”McClain led all scorers with 23 points and added six rebounds and four assists. Vogel contributed 13 points and six steals. McGee had six pointsto go with his team-high 12 rebounds. Smith had six points and sixrebounds while Edmond Weathersby came off the bench to score 10 points.

Georgetown was led by Todd Hannegan who finished with 20 points, including four 3-pointers. Morgan added 12 points with Dan Oldencontributing eight. The Bulldogs finished with nine 3-pointers in the game.In addition to his points and steals, Byrd gave credit to Vogel for the leadership he contributed on the court.

“Aaron played with a different type of focus,” Byrd said. “He played like aleader tonight. He played hard and played a total game.”Vogel said on a team that does not have a senior, he needed to step it up in the final quarter.

“I give all the glory to God,” Vogel said. “It feels awesome. We needed aleader out there so I stepped up and filled the role. I thank God for theopportunity.”Reserve Christian jumped out to a 5-0 lead on a drive by McClain.

Georgetown came back to tie the game at 7 with three minutes left in the first quarter as Olden took a deep inbounds pass in for a layup. A jumperby Addison Ellis regained the lead for the Eagles. Reserve Christian keptpossession as a foul was called after the short and McClain responded with a pass inside to Weathersby. But a 3-pointer from the left wing byHannegan gave the Bulldogs a 15-14 lead after the first quarter of play.

Ellis tied the game at 18 on a drive down the lane. A put back by McGee anda bounce pass from McClain to Smith inside gave the Eagles a four-point lead. Simoneaux added a hook shot in the paint to make it 24-18 with 3:35remaining in the half.

Georgetown tied the game at 30 on two free throws by James Wooten. Buton the Bulldogs’ next possession, Weathersby grabbed a steal and took it in. Weathersby was fouled on the layup, hitting the free throw to give theEagles a 33-30 lead at halftime.

Georgetown tied the score on their opening possession of the second half on a 3-pointer by Morgan from the left corner. Two free throws by McClainon Reserve Christian’s ensuing possession started the Eagles on a 9-0 run.

McClain drove around left side and Simoneaux scored on a put back to make it 39-33 with 6:31 left. After a timeout by the Bulldogs, Vogel buried a 3-pointer from the left wing to give the Eagles a 42-33 lead at the 5:47 mark.

Hannegan answered for the Bulldogs with a 3-pointer from the top of the arc on the ensuing possession. A drive by Morgan brought the Bulldogs towithin four. On Georgetown’s next possession, however, McClain grabbed asteal and bounced to Vogel driving in from the left side. Smith thenintercepted another pass and tossed to McClain downcourt. McClain againfound Vogel driving from the left, giving the Eagles a 46-38 lead.

A pass from Brett Robicheaux to Hannegan off an inbounds started the Bulldogs on a 9-0 run on their next possession. Two free throws byRobicheaux gave Georgetown a 47-46 lead with 1:13 left in the quarter.

McClain regained the lead for the Eagles with a drive down the lane on the next possession. A three-point play by Weathersby gave the Eagles a four-point lead. After Olden hit a 3-pointer from the right corner, McClainscored on a turnaround jumper to give the Eagles a 53-50 lead heading into the final eight minutes.

West St. John 93,St. Thomas Aquinas 83

EDGARD – West St. John held off a persistent St. Thomas Aquinas team fora 93-83 victory in the bi-district playoffs Friday night.

The Rams (20-5) advanced to the regionals against Lake Providence at home last night. Lake Providence, the District 2-2A runners-up, defeatedMany, 65-51, Friday night. The winner will play the winner of theChristian Life-Pine game in the quarterfinals. St. Thomas Aquinas finishedthe season at 17-17.

The Rams led 19-12 after the first quarter but St. Thomas Aquinas cameback to cut the deficit to 38-32 at halftime.

Donriel Louis led West St. John with 30 points. Elijah Jasmin and MarlonJackson each chipped in with 14 points. Jeremy Lumar and Brian Lumaradded 11 points apiece.

Byron Robertson had a game-high 49 points for St. Thomas Aquinas. MelvinCosey chipped in with 23 points.

St. James 83,Parkview Baptist 58

BATON ROUGE – St. James ended Parkview’s Baptist try for a third straightClass 3A state championship with an 83-58 victory on the road Friday night.

The Wildcats (17-7) played host to L.B. Landry last night in the regionalplayoffs. Landry, the 11-3A champions, defeated Independence, 46-22,Friday. The winner will travel to the quarterfinals where they will playthe winner of Amite-Marksville. Parkview Baptist finished at 20-11.Corey Webster led the way for St. James with 27 points. Deshawn Burhamadded 25 points and Leslie Aubert 14 for the Wildcats. Parkview was ledby Courtney Trask with 26 points.

Patterson 74, Riverside 52

PATTERSON – Top-ranked Patterson ended the best season in Riverside history with a 74-52 victory at home in the bi-district playoffs Friday night.

Patterson (27-4) advanced to the regional playoffs against Springfield.

Riverside, making its first playoff appearance in the LHSAA, finished at 13-17.

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