West St. John knocks off pesky Riverside Academy

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 11, 2004

By GEORGE MAHL-Sports Editor

EDGARD – The West St. John Rams remained undefeated in district play with a 68-55 victory over Riverside Academy Friday night in Edgard. Rams starter Thomas Augusta led West St. John with 15 points.

“I thought Thomas played very well tonight,” said West St. John Head Coach Antoine Edwards. “Not many people can handle him when he is at the top of his game.”

Riverside junior Josh Labiche led all scorers with 19 points.

The Rams jumped out to a quick 14-2 lead with 3:14 remaining in the first quarter. Neil Songy led the Rams in scoring in the first quarter with eight points. In addition, Songy scored the final six points of the first quarter.

The Rams held a comfortable 18-6 lead at the end of the first quarter.

It was more of the same in the second quarter for the Rams, until about three minutes remaining until halftime.

Trailing 28-12, Riverside went on a 7-0 run to close the gap to 28-19 with 2:14 left until halftime. Labiche’s three-pointer cut the lead to nine points with about two minutes left until halftime.

However, that appeared to serve as a wake-up call for the Rams. West St. John went out and went on a 7-0 run to expand its lead to 35-19 with eight seconds left in the half. Augusta scored six of the seven points during the spurt.

Augusta and Labiche each had 11 points at halftime.

Another 3-point shot by Labiche closed the gap to 35-26 with about seven minutes remaining in the third quarter. However, the Rams responded with an 8-0 run to grab its largest lead of the game, 43-26.

Matt Rogers’ put back pulled the Rebels to within 15 points, 43-28.

West St. John outscored Riverside 20-17 in the third quarter.

In the fourth quarter, the closest the Rebels would come was 15 points. A three-pointer by Jarod Ceasar cut the Riverside deficit to 56-43 with 7:03 remaining in the game.

During the final 1:47 of the game, Riverside went on a 6-0 run to cut the lead to 66-55 with 23 seconds remaining.

“Because we had some breakdowns, I thought defensively we played fair,” said Edwards. “But offensively I thought we played well.”

The victory put the Rams in firm control of first place in 10-2A. WSJ returns to action Friday night at Fisher. RA will play St. Martin’s Friday night.