West St. John wins again to advance to Top 28

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 9, 2005

Anderson scores 24, Stipe 15 in 78-60 victory over Ville Platte on the road


Sports Editor

VILLE PLATTE-In terms of winning games, you can just call the West St. John boys basketball team the Energizer bunny.

They just keep going, and going, and going and going.

The Rams picked up yet another victory on Friday night. With a 78-60 defeat of Ville Platte on the road, the Rams advanced to the state semifinals in the Cajundome in Lafayette.

West St. John took on perhaps their toughest competition of the year last night in McCall for the right to play for the Class 2A Championship.

Against Ville Platte, Denarold Anderson led the Rams with 24 points. Dana Stipe and Juan Joseph also had solid games in the backcourt for West St. John as the duo combined for 31 points. Stipe had 16 while Joseph accounted for 15.

A very competitive game in the second half with no team taking a significant lead, the game was one in the first half by the Rams as they outscored Ville Platte 39-24.

“It is always a wonderful feeling whenever you can make it to a prestigious event like the Top 28 Tournament,” West St. John Head Coach Antoine Edwards said. “It means you are only two games away from winning the championship.

“It is a great experience because you have a lot of schools that are sitting at home right now. We feel good about our team and our chances and we are looking forward to it.”

Edwards said his team took care of business against a very good Ville Platte team on the road.

“We did what we wanted to accomplish,” Edwards said. “We came out and we jumped on those guys from the beginning. I thought we once again played solid defense and we were able to score points. We also did not turn the ball over that much which is always a good thing.

“I also thought for the very first time that we shot pretty well from the free throw line.”

Edwards said he hopes his team can handle the distractions of playing in Lafayette and in front of large crowds.

“It’s going to be a great experience,” Edwards said. “I told the kids that I want them to be excited. For all of them it is going to be their first time there.

“They have been in big playoff ballgames before, but nothing as big as going into the Top 28. A lot of guys get their and are excited and forget what they are all about. I’m looking forward to it with these guys.”