Fierce HHS effort ends in loss

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 3, 2002


WESTWEGO – Last week Hahnville coach Brian Lumar described a Tiger team with no intensity, waiting until the last three minutes to give their best effort, but lose by 10 points. Friday night Lumar coached an exactly opposite team under the bright lights of the Alario Center.

Against the Shaw Eagles, who Lumar was previously assistant coach for, the Tigers came out with ferocious play for the first three quarters. After battling neck and neck, and grasping the lead for a few short moments, it was the last few minutes that led to the Tigers’ 61-52 demise.

“I am proud of the team, it was probably one of our best games,” said Lumar. “Even though we lost, we played hard and well for three full quarters. We just made a couple of mental mistakes and ran out of gas at the end.”

Lumar’s comments after their tournament game with Brother Martin were a little more harsh.

“We played terrible. No intensity. We gave our best efforts in the last minutes of the game, but we’ve got to come out of the blocks strong and play from start to finish,” urged Lumar.

He said he applauds their effort in the last three minutes, but if they would have played like that for the entire game, the Tigers would be a tough team to beat.

“We can’t wait until we’re losing to decide to play,” Lumar added. “Then we missed 15 free throws. That was one game we gave away.”

Going into Friday night’s game, Lumar wanted his Tigers to come out of the blocks strong and focus on defense, and he got it. Hahnville held the Eagles to eight points in the first eight minutes, while putting 12 points on their side of the board.

The scene from the second quarter played out similar, with the Tigers matching points with Shaw, although at the end, the Eagles pulled ahead by one point, 30-29.

After allowing the Eagles to score only eight points in the first quarter, then giving up 22 and the lead in the second quarter, it was either a return of pride or strong words in the locker room at halftime that sent them out stronger in the third quarter.

Shaw opened with a three point shot in an attempt to set the tone in their favor, but Nickolas Cannon jumped back with a lay up on transition for two more Hahnville points.

Al Mott added to the Tigers’ cause, tieing the game at 37 with two points and 2:30 left on the clock.

Shaw returned the favor with a two-point basket, but Mott met the challenge, dropping in a three pointer at the buzzer to hand the Tigers a one point lead, 40-39, at the end of the third quarter. Trying to continue Hahnville’s swing of momentum, Cannon added another two points to the Tigers’ lead. Two Shaw goals gave them another one-point lead, before it was overturned again by another Cannon two points.

With the fourth quarter running down, the Eagles broke through the slowing Tiger defense to retake the lead and extend it by six points.

The Tigers rushed to tie the game, but could not complete their next shot for the lead, even after repeated attempts under the goal. The Tigers were running out of gas and the Eagles knew it.

More Hahnville mistakes helped Shaw stretch its lead through as two minutes came up on the clock. Valentino Joseph was the first to cut into Shaw’s growing 10-point lead with a jump shot from mid way out.

Repeated attempts close to the goal ended in frustration, as the Tigers sputtered and the ball bounced into the Eagles’ hands. Garren Alexander stepped up to the foul line for one point and seconds later made up for missing the other foul shot by sinking the last three pointer of the game.