Rams’ season comes to close at Country Day
Published 12:00 am Friday, February 29, 2008
By RYAN ARENA
After winning upon their return to the playoffs after a year’s hiatus, West St. John had its most daunting task to date in front of it – attempting to halt No. 3 seeded Country Day from making a return to the Class 1A state title game.
But the Cajuns rode a hot start and 21 points from center Eddie Ludwig to take one step closer to a return to the Cajundome, winning 80-56 at home over the Rams.
“Country Day controlled the tempo from the beginning,” said West St. John Coach Antoine Edwards. “From tip off, our offense didn’t play well. Our defense didn’t play well either.”
The Cajuns move on to face Delhi in the regional round, the No. 6 seed in the tournament.
Country Day (23-13) led 15-2 to start the game, and held a 23-9 lead after a quarter.
The Cajuns extended that to 39-23 at halftime, and led 57-36 after three quarters.
West St. John could never climb back into it and make a serious push, something Edwards attributes to defense – a WSJ one that had been strong all year, but fathered on Tuesday, and a Country Day one that gave his team fits.
“In the playoffs, if you don’t play defense, you’re going to lose,” he said. “They were able to pressure us and force turnovers. When they did that, they scored on our breakdowns. Our transition defense wasn’t there.
“They were getting easy lay-ups on backdoor cuts, just executing very well.”
West St. John center Alton Joseph got into early foul trouble, which gave the Rams issues from the get go when it came to handling Ludwig, the Cajuns’ 6’8 scoring leader.
“Our guys weren’t able to really contain him. (Their front line) hurt us,” said Edwards.
Blake Comminie led the Rams with 16 points. Raynard Thomas added 14. Dray Joseph scored 10.
Noel Keuboun scored 20 for Country Day. Jack Baus added 13, and Hunter Ham scored 10.
Edwards said that the loss brought an end to a season that was filled with both promise and progress.
“Like I told the kids, getting back was a big accomplishment,” said Edwards. “We improved in district play, moving from fourth to second place. We achieved some of our goals. To go from fourth place to second was big for us.”