Fast start, 3’s lift Bulldogs over host Comets

Published 11:45 pm Tuesday, February 11, 2014


LAPLACE — St. Charles Catholic pushed back at Lutcher time and time again in the second half of Wednesday’s non-district contest, but the Bulldogs always seemed to have an answer.

And usually, it came from 3-point range.

Lutcher canned seven 3-pointers after halftime and overcame a 24-point outing by SCC’s Kameron Keller en route to a 73-63 victory at St. Charles. 

“We made some big baskets when they started making a run,” said Lutcher coach Chase Delrie. “I thought we got a bit lazy defensively in the second half. (Keller) did whatever he wanted tonight. But fortunately we were able to keep them from getting over the top.”

Four Bulldogs scored in double figures, led by Jaylon Wingate and Tiajah White, each of whom tallied 15 points. Marvin Lafargue scored 13 and Tariq Belvin added 12.

Austin Weber scored 13 for SCC. Jarrid Johnson scored 11 and Brady Becker added eight.

Lutcher got out the blocks quickly to start the game, taking a 14-4 lead in the first 5:10 of the game and leading 33-22 at halftime. The Comets struggled to handle the ball in the first half, turning it over 16 times.

“They got 20 points off of our turnovers,” said St. Charles coach Paul Waguespack. “We started the game off  lethargic.”

SCC (9-15) quickly cut the lead to six early in the third quarter after a 3-pointer by Seth Noah and a driving layup by Keller. LHS (11-15) scored five quick points and pushed its advantage to 39-27 on Wingate’s 3 from the wing. 

Then Keller went to work. He drew a foul and sank two free throws, then did it again before scoring on a drive. Johnson got into the action with his own bank shot in the lane. 

“He’s a tough kid. He’s been playing there for awhile now,” said Delrie. “He willed them to a few buckets in a row in the third and fourth quarters.”

Said Waguespack, “He was the bright spot. Kam just understands the game,” said Waguespack. “He and J.P. (Johnson) are playmakers for others, not just themselves.”

After a Johnson free throw, Weber scored on a reverse layup to cap an 11-2 Comet run that make it 42-38. 

Lutcher turned it over and the Comets had a chance to cut things to one possession. But SCC made a giveaway of its own, and Wingate nailed another 3 to make it 45-38. 

“We’ve got some good shooters,” said Wingate. “We shared the ball tonight and that was big offensively.”

Lutcher started to assert control. Belvin’s 3-pointer early in the fourth gave the Bulldogs their biggest lead of the night at 55-42. 

“I thought getting up 10-12 in the early stages of the game allowed us to not get into any kind of a panic,” said Delrie. “We’ve got a young team. I think that gave us some quick confidence.”

But a Noah bucket capped a quick 6-2 SCC run and the Comets cut things to eight, 57-49, with 5:37 left. Lafargue answered, though, slashing into the lane, banking home a shot and drawing a foul for a 3-point play that made it 60-49. 

From there, 3-pointers by Wingate and Belvin helped put things away for Lutcher.

“They outhustled and outplayed us,” said Waguespack. 

With three games remaining, the Comets (9-15) have tripled their win total of three from a year ago. Waguespack said that he’d like to get to 10 wins at least before the season’s conclusion. 

“It’s been frustrating, but at the same time it’s been more of a pleasure to coach this year,” said Waguespack. “These kids play and practice hard. I’m proud of the effort.”