Local players named to all-star squad

The boys and girls high school basketball season ended last week without a Louisiana High School Athletic Association state champion coming from the local area. But for six local senior basketball players, the season will continue for at least one more week.

The players were selected to participate in the 2012 Louisiana High School Basketball Coaches Association Boys and Girls All-Star game.

The game will be played on Saturday at Northwestern State's Prather Coliseum in Natchitoches. The girls game tips off at 2 p.m. with the boys games to follow at 4 p.m.

Four local players will represent the West team during the boys' All-Star game.

Those players are Houston Chatman and Gilbert Talbot of Ellender, Deonta Ward of H.L. Bourgeois and Kevan Bernard of Assumption.

Leah Washington of Vandebilt Catholic and Jasmin Mills of Assumption will represent the West team in the girls' game.

E.D. White Catholic coach Jonathan Keife will serve as West boys team coordinator, while Vandebilt Catholic girls coach Kathy Luke will coordinate the West girls team. Former Vandebilt player, assistant coach and current Country Day coach Lanie Griffin will serve as the coordinator of the East girls team.

Luke is no stranger to state all-star games. It will be her third time serving as a coordinator of the event.

Luke said it is a perfect chance for the players to showcase their skills for a final time as high school athletes.

"It's an opportunity for the seniors to play one more time," she said. "It's just an enjoyable three days. The coaches go on Thursday. The kids get in on Friday. We all leave on Saturday after the game. It's not a stressful time. It's an enjoyable time for them to close out their high school careers."

Keife said he looks forward to serving as a coordinator at the state all-star game for the first time.

"I'm honored just to be selected to be a coordinator," Keife said. "I think it's going to be a great game. From the looks of the rosters, I think there is going to be a lot of talent. It's a lot of Division I prospects, so I'm excited about it."

Keife said he welcomes the chance of watching four local boys players compete together on the West team.

"That is going to be added excitement to see some of the guys compete," he said. "You know about them, whether it is from the newspaper or from other coaches. You never get a chance to see them play because you are busy with your own club, so I'm looking forward to that as well."

Two local players will also participate in the 3-point shooting contest during the all-star festivities.

Teren Morris of H.L. Bourgeois will take part in the boys competition, while Jewel Triggs of Vandebilt will play in the girls contest.

Morris and Triggs will represent the region comprised of Terrebonne, Lafourche, Assumption and St. Mary parishes in the competition. Both players received the chance after winning the regional contest held at H.L. Bourgeois on Feb. 17.