Wildcats win Riverside tournament

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 6, 2003


RESERVE – The East St. John High School basketball team claimed first place Saturday in the Riverside Academy Holiday Tournament with a 68-59 win over Springfield High School.

The ESJ Wildcats were led by Ryan Perrilloux, who finished with 25 points. He scored a total of 87 points in the three-day tournament, which was held in the Rebels’ gym. Perrilloux was also named tournament MVP.

“I really need to credit our principal (Debbie Schum) for supporting the basketball program. She is one of the reasons for our success early on,” said ESJ head coach Charles Julien.

A well-played first quarter resulted in a 21-21 tie at the end of the period. Perrilloux, a sophomore, showed his quickness off the dribble by constantly beating SHS defenders to the basket in the first quarter. Trailing 12-7 with about five minutes left in the first quarter, the Wildcats scored seven unanswered points to claim a 14-12 lead with 2:51 remaining in the period. The key basket during the spurt was a three-point shot by Ryan Stipe, tying the score at 12.

Throughout the game, the Wildcats had difficulty containing SHS center A.J. Danzler. The 6-foot-5 player had 11 points in the first quarter and was a difficult to stop in the paint. On the other hand, Perrilloux was able to block several shots and disrupt the offensive flow of the Bulldogs.

“Ryan is a triple-double player for us. He can shoot, pass and score. He may be one of best scorers in the state,” Julien said.

In the second quarter, the Reserve school faced a 25-22 deficit when Dywand Dennis hit two consecutive three-pointers to give ESJ a 28-25 lead over Class 2A Springfield. Not only did Perrilloux step up his defense in the second quarter, but the rest of his team did as well. The Wildcats defense only allowed three points in the period.

Karnecio Esco’s free throw with 44 seconds until halftime gave the District 6-5A school a 37-30 lead.

“Karnecio’s senior leadership is one of the things that is making us go,” said the first-year coach.

The third period saw more of the same for both teams. A 7-0 run to begin the final period saw ESJ jump out to a 44-34 lead to with 3:27 remaining. Danzler scored the last six points of the period to cut the SHS deficit.

However, the final period belonged to Perrilloux and the Wildcats. His 12 points in the period gave his team a commanding 66-51 lead with less than two minutes to play.

All-Tournament players included: John Cain (French Settlement High School), Thad Soileau (Grand Isle High School), David Lanoix (Ascension Catholic High School), Josh Labiche (Riverside Academy), Josh Lumar (West St. John High School), Nick Narcisse (St. James High School), and A.J. Danzler and Germaine George (Springfield High School).

“I want to thank all of the parents that helped us out this year. They did a great job for us,” said Riverside Academy head coach Tommy Monier.

“There were a lot of guys in this tournament that are going to be playing (NCAA) Division 1-A and 1-AA college basketball in the future,” Monier concluded.