Rams headed to playoffs after win over Bulldogs

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Sports Editor

West St. John celebrated its senior night on Friday, while at the same time attempting to clinch a playoff berth in the 2008 state playoffs.

But district foe Ascension Catholic did its best to be a spoiler on both counts.

The Bulldogs, who were winless in District 9-1A, refused to go away and found themselves locked in a tie game midway through the fourth quarter, 45-45.

But senior Blake Comminie scored two consecutive baskets to give West St. John a four-point lead. Another basket by the Rams’ Dray Joseph would push the lead to six. Ascension Catholic would not score again, and the Rams found themselves heading for the playoffs, a 53-45 winner.

“It was our senior night, and we definitely didn’t want to lose,” said Comminie. “It’s great for us to be back (in the playoffs). Last year, we missed it. Now, we’re looking to make a run.”

Comminie led the Rams (12-12, 5-3) with 17 points. Dray Joseph scored 10. Alton Joseph and Raynard Thomas each added seven.

The win secured a second place tie with East Iberville, who it split the season series with. White Castle has clinched the 9-1A title with a 7-1 district record.

West St. John Coach Antoine Edwards began the game with five senior starters. But nonetheless, the Rams couldn’t find an offensive rhythm.

“We played poorly offensively in the first half,” said Edwards. “In the second half, we came out flat again. Down the stretch, we were able to get a few baskets to get the lead, but you’ve got to compliment Ascension Catholic. The game was tight the whole way.”

The game was about as dead even as one could be after three quarters. The two teams were tied, 12-12 at the end of the first quarter. The score was still tied, 26-26, at halftime. A 39-39 tie preceded the fourth quarter.

Each time West St. John appeared to seize control, Ascension Catholic (6-27, 0-8) was able to slow the game down and generate a basket, be it an open layup or an open 3-pointer in its half court set.

But defense was the difference in the fourth quarter – those opportunities dried up for the Bulldogs, as West St. John allowed only six points in the final period.

“We came out and played hard defensively, which allowed us to come out of it successfully,” said Comminie.