Published 12:00 am Monday, December 12, 2005

ESJ Lady Cats go 12-2 with win over Thibodaux

Leslie Forest gets game high 16 in 49-36 win over Tigers


Sports Editor

RESERVE — East St. John’s Lady Wildcat basketball has gotten off to a roaring start this season, going 12-2 through the first quarter of their schedule after shaving Thibodaux’s Lady Tigers (4-1) Tuesday night in a 49-36 win.

Led by 6’4” senior Leslie Forest, the ESJ squad has been convincing in their games so far, running up an average margin of victory of just less than 15 points per game.

Tuesday’s game featured an undefeated Thibodaux team heading into Reserve for a non-district match-up in the Wildcat Gym. The game opened with a nine point run to ESJ out quickly, mostly complements of several baskets and steals by senior Stasha Thomas and dominance off of the boards by Forest. Bridgette Brown finally got Thibodaux on the scoreboard just before the first period of play ended with a pair of free throws, but defensive play by the Lady Cats set the tone early and finished the quarter with a 15-2 score.

The Lady Tigers came on stronger in the second quarter, holding ESJ to nine points, but a string of quick baskets by Desire Waller and Brown barely put a dent in the score as the teams went into halftime 24-13.

Thibodaux opened scoring in the second half with a steal and a 3-pointer by Waller, but Forest broke the Tigers momentum with a pair of baskets and a handful of rebounds on both sides of the court for fast breaks and second-chance shots. Junior forward Crystal Fleming added to the lead with a basket with less than a minute to go in the third to take it into the break 39-22.

Thibodaux made it look more respectable in the final period of play by scoring 14 to close the gap a bit, but the Lady Cats made the most of their possessions and ran down the clock to close out the game with a final of 49-36.

Forest posted a game high 16 points in the win with an unofficial 18 rebounds while Thomas and Fleming added eight apiece. Waller led the Lady Tigers in scoring with 13 while Brown got eight.

East St. John’s girls squad returns home next week for a game against South Lafourche on Monday in the Wildcat gym at 7 p.m.