Turner, Wildcats get job done

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 4, 2001


DESTREHAN – Destrehan’s Lionel Turner mentioned Tuesday that with all the offensive weapons the Wildcats have, it is their job to make the shot once they get open. In that case, Turner and the Wildcats should have gotten a bonus for their performance against East St. John Tuesday night in the Destrehan gym. Destrehan hit 10 3-pointers, including five by Turner, as the Wildcats rolled to an 82-59 victory in District 7-5A play. Destrehan remained in third place in District 7-5A with a 6-2 record and improved to 16-11 overall. The Wildcats travel to Hahnville Tuesday. East St. John fell to 4-4-18 overall and 1-6 in district. Turner, who played with East St. John as a freshman, finished with a career-high 31 points to lead all scorers. “I’ve been working hard, staying after practice to work on my shooting,” Turner said. “We are an offensive team. Anybody can score so if they get left open, it’s their job to make the shot. I made it my job to get the shots tonight.” Mark Stewart contributed 15 points for Destrehan. Jazsmine Eugene added 14 points and Travis Wilright and Richard Jones seven apiece. Louis Gardner scored a team-high 20 points for East St. John. Darwin Pittman tossed in another 15 points while Ricky Johnson had 13. Turner gave Destrehan an early 5-3 lead with a 3-pointer from the left corner. After East St. John tied the game at 7 on a drive by Karnacio Hamilton, Jones was fouled while burying a 3-pointer from the right corner, converting the free throw to make it 11-7. Turner’s jumper from the right baseline built the lead to 15-9. East St. John came back to take a 18-17 lead behind jumpers by Pittman and Johnson and three free throws by Gardner. But Turner answered with a 3-pointer from the right wing on the next possession. Eugene took a steal in, then scored off a pass from Darren Brown to give Destrehan a 24-18 lead at the end of the first quarter. East St. John tied the game at 24 early in the second quarter on drives by Pittman and Gardner. On Destrehan’s ensuing trip down the court, Johnson hit a 3-pointer from the right corner, giving the Wildcats the lead for good. Wilright buried another 3-pointer from the right wing, then forced a steal that led to a layup by Eugene and a 34-24 lead. East St. John got the deficit down to seven as Pittman converted a three-point play off a drive inside. Destrehan answered with 3-pointers by Turner and Stewart to push the lead back to 42-31. East St. John came back again, getting the lead down to six on a drive by Gardner and a jumper by Johnson. But Scott Simon scored on a put back for Destrehan to make it 46-38 at the half. The lead went down to six again early in the third quarter as Pittman hit a jumper. But three possessions later, Turner knocked down a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 4:38 left in the quarter. That would start the Wildcats on a 14-2 run to end the period. Turner scored on two jumpers and off a steal by Eugene and Stewart canned a 3-pointer from the top of the key to make it 62-44 heading into the fourth quarter. Destrehan got the lead up to 28 in the final minutes of the game as Turner drove on for a dunk off a rebound by Stewart. “We’ve got some guys who can shoot it and we were able to get some easy looks,” Destrehan head coach Joe Schick said. “Offensively, it was no problem. Defensively, I thought we did a better job in the second half than we did in the first. Coming off South Lafourche (Friday night), we had a bit of a let down in the first half. But the guys played hard the whole game and we were able to wear them down.”