East St. John falls to Terrebonne

Published 11:45 pm Friday, September 20, 2013


LAPLACE—Thursday’s District 5-I clash between East St. John and Terrebonne wasn’t the kind of repeat performance the Ladycats were hoping for.
Just as it had Tuesday against Central Lafourche, ESJ captured the opening game against Terrebonne. But just as Central Lafourche did two days earlier, the Tigers rallied back and controlled the rest of the match, winning the next three games to take a 23-25, 25-17,  25-21 and 25-19 victory at Leon Godchaux,
“The exact same thing happened Tuesday,” said East St. John coach Ronnie Smith. “We jumped out and took that first game and then we went in the tank. We went into that second game today (against Terrebonne) emphasizing that this was the most important one. You have a team down two games to none and often they’ll quit. But we couldn’t keep it going for whatever reason.”
Terrebonne junior Lillian Rodrigue was the day’s star, posting 20 kills and three blocks. She was often tasked with matching up at the net with East St. John senior hitter Al’lante Snyder, the Wildcats’ top scoring threat.
“My goal was to at least block her twice today, and I was able to do that,” said Rodrigue. “I just looked to find her hands and play it smart.”
Said Terrebonne coach Craig Hamner, “Lily had everything going for her today. She knew where to hit the ball … We knew they had a very good player, but we felt like we had the strength at the net to win there.”
Prior to this week, East St. John (6-4, 0-2) had won six of its first eight matches.
Terrebonne led 11-10 when ESJ ran off four straight points, including a kill by Melinda Perrilloux, a tip by Snyder and an ace by Jessica Scioneaux.
A rash of ESJ mistakes helped propel the Tigers on a 5-0 run that gave Terrebonne a 20-18 lead. Perrilloux’s tip for a score tied things up at 20, but a Rodrigue kill and a Wildcats error gave Terrebonne a 22-20 advantage. But the Tigers couldn’t close the Wildcats out. ESJ scored on four consecutive Terrebonne return errors to bring things to game point, and leading 24-23, another Perrilloux tip sealed the ESJ win.
“We made way too many hitting errors,” said Hamner. “We gave away a lot of points.”
Terrebonne (9-5, 2-0) charged out of the gate in game two, taking a 12-5 lead early. ESJ fought back, cutting the Tiger lead to 14-13 partially on the strength of three Snyder kills and her tip. But Terrebonne regained the advantage, outscoring the Wildcats 11-4 the rest of the way.
The Wildcats came out of the gates stronger in the third game to take a 12-8 advantage. But after a Rodrigue spike tied the game at 14, Terrebonne took over. The Tigers scored 11 points before an ESJ answer to take a 23-14 lead. The Wildcats fought back to make a game of it late at 24-21, but Terrebonne clinched a 2-1 match lead on a return error.
“(Rodrigue) adjusted as the match went on. She was hitting them long early and she changed things up. She did a good job,” said Smith. “Our big hitters started hitting it long and out of bounds after that first game, and I think a lot of the match swung right there.”
The Tigers dominated the third game. Cece Hazard’s tip gave Terrebonne an 8-2 lead and it never looked back.
“We just needed to shake (the first game) off. We knew we needed to do a better job working as a team,” said Rodrigue.
Snyder had eight kills to lead ESJ. Elizabeth Scioneaux added six kills.
Hazard finished with eight kills and five aces for Terrebonne. Kasie Ordoyne had 26 digs.
The Ladycats will attempt to regroup this weekend in some non-district tournament action as they travel to compete in the Terrebonne tournament today. After that, East St. John is off until Thursday, where it will go on the road to face district foe H.L. Bourgeois.
“We just have to put the two we lost behind us,” said Smith. “Get back to work and start again.”