Ellender squeaks past Tarpons


GALLIANO — The rim was unkind to South Lafourche in the final minute against Ellender.

The Tarpons trailed by 15 points in the third quarter only to rally in the fourth quarter and tie the game at 57. After Ellender regained the lead, South Lafourche had two chances to tie it in the final minute, but Shawn Cheramie's layup rimmed out and Treavon Evans missed two free throws.

With South Lafourche missing on its opportunity to tie the game, Ellender didn't miss on its chance to protect the lead by making three free throws in the final 28 seconds for a 67-64 nondistrict win on Tuesday.

The game was marred by three player ejections and four technical fouls called. Both teams played a physical game, and Ellender coach Cornell Scott said his team did well to keep its composure and make plays down the stretch.

"We have been working on our free throws. We know that if we give ourselves a chance we have the guys that can make some foul shots," Scott said. "I have a bunch of young guys, but they are smart enough to know when we have a lead we just have to play our game and make them guard you. It was a great test for our team, to learn how to play with a lead in a hostile environment. I love the South Lafourche fans. They are always behind their team, but my guys executed in a hostile environment."

The Tarpon fans had little to cheer for in the third quarter when Ellender (9-4 overall) stretched its 10-point halftime lead to 43-28 after Leland Alexander (14 points) drained a 3-pointer with 4:31 on the clock.

Later in the third quarter ther,e was a tussle for the ball and South Lafourche's Wilbert Rhodes and Ellender's Justin Johnson nearly came to blows during the play. Both players were ejected, but that play gave South Lafourche (5-4) a spark. After Cheramie canned a 3-pointer, South Lafourche trailed 49-40 to start the fourth quarter.

South Lafourche kept that momentum and went on a 17-8 run in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 57 with 2:44 left to play.

Evans led South Lafourche with a game-high 26 points, and he scored 10 points during the run to help the Tarpons get back in the game.

Ellender quickly responded when Jasi Barabin knocked down a 3-pointer, and Eric Welch and Cameron Parfait each scored for a 64-59 lead with 1:27 left in the game.

Cheramie drained another 3-pointer to make it 64-62 and the Tarpons had a chance to tie the game when Ellender committed a turnover and Cheramie was alone for a layup. However, the ball bounced three times on the rim before falling out leaving the score at 64-62.

After Welch missed a free throw, Evans was fouled on the rebound. He had a chance to tie the game at the free-throw line, but both of his attempts hit the back of the rim. Ellender committed a lane violation on the second attempt, and Evans made the third free throw for a 64-63 score with 38 seconds left.

The Tarpons put Welch (11 points) and Parfait (18 points) on the free-throw line in consecutive possessions. The pair responded by making 3-of-4 in the final 28 seconds to give Ellender the win.

South Lafourche coach Brian Callais said his team lost its composure early with the rough play but was able to regroup and had a chance to win at the end.

"I am proud of our guys and I am proud of South Lafourche basketball. We handled ourselves with class," Callais said. "We lost our composure at the beginning of the game, and I had to take out two starters when we had a lead. But, we fought back and kept it together, and I am proud of my guys."

It didn't take long for the rough play to claim a player as Ellender's Jaylan Coleman was ejected in the first quarter for throwing an elbow.

South Lafourche went on to take a 21-19 first-quarter lead after Silas Griffin scored with four seconds on the clock.

Ellender started the second quarter with a 7-0 run to take a 26-21 lead at the 5:23 mark. South Lafourche responded and cut it to 28-26 after Evans made a free throw, but Ellender closed out the quarter with an 8-0 run to hold a 36-26 advantage at halftime.

LOREAUVILLE 49, COVENANT CHRISTIAN ACADEMY 45 (BOYS)

At Loreauville, the Lions fell to 6-1 on the season and got 17 points and six steals from Jordan McKay and 12 points from Datren Williams.

The Lions led 13-12 after the first quarter, trailed 30-25 at halftime and 41-34 entering the fourth quarter.

CHAPELLE 36, ST. JAMES 26 (GIRLS)

At Metairie, the Lady Wildcats fell to 3-10 with the nondistrict loss. St. James led 12-9 at halftime, and got nine points from Diamond West.

LOREAUVILLE 35, COVENANT CHRISTIAN ACADEMY 9 (GIRLS)

At Loreauville, MacKinley Carter scored four points to lead the Lady Lions in the nondistrict loss.

ASSUMPTION GIRLS TO PLAY TODAY

The Assumption Lady Mustangs will host St, Martin's at 6 p.m. today in a nondistrict game that was originally scheduled for Tuesday.