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Braves pull away late from Terrebonne


GRAY — H.L. Bourgeois may have been fighting an emotional hangover from a big District 7-5A win at New Iberia on Saturday, but for three quarters on Tuesday night, the Braves found themselves fighting their biggest rival — the Terrebonne Tigers.

Terrebonne gave the Braves all they wanted until the start of the fourth quarter when a big H.L. Bourgeois run led to a 71-59 victory that pushed the Braves to 17-3 overall and 4-0 in district.

The Braves led 25-19 after the first quarter, 43-38 at halftime and 56-51 with a minute to go in the third quarter before riding a 15-4 run to the home-court victory.

"I felt good after the way we played (against New Iberia), but with kids you can expect an emotional letdown," H.L. Bourgeois coach Andrew Caillouet said. "Against New Iberia, we put on a defensive clinic, and we didn't play defense worth a darn (against Terrebonne). A lot of that was because of Terrebonne. When we play hard, I tell my kids this all the time, we can beat anybody, but when we are missing just a little bit, anyone can play with us. We just didn't play well."

Terrebonne (9-11, 1-3 in district) got down big in the second quarter but fought back before being overcome by the Braves and their pressure defense in the fourth quarter.

"I was extremely proud of the effort," Tigers coach Derek Szush said of his team. "H.L. has a heck of a ball club. They are 17-3 for a reason. I am not going to say we outplayed them, but we played great team basketball. We had a lot of things working. We just need more experience. We have a freshman and a sophomore in the back court. I just told them we need to grow up and keep grinding, and we will be fine. I have faith that those guys will pull through, and we will be there for the second half of district."

The Braves, who got 19 points from Marlin Bonvillain, 18 points from Isaac Allridge and 11 points from Chris Harris, led by as much as 14 points in the first half.

"When we got some leads, we just played dumb offensively," Caillouet said. "I mean, we took some God-awful shots."

Terrebonne, which got 18 points from Ezell Gardner, 13 points from William Moses and 10 points each from Erin Harris and Venjie Wallis, did most of its damage on offense by scoring in the paint off extra passes and putbacks.

"We are not a great 3-point shooting team, but we are finding a way to score and finding a way to get the ball inside," Szush said. "We are doing a lot of things right. We are getting a lot of layups and finishing well. We should have enough experience for the second half of district. I was happy with the guys played."

The Braves held Terrebonne to eight points in the game's final nine minutes and led 71-55 with 3:47 left before running a couple of the game's final minutes off the clock late by passing the ball around in a half-court set with Terrebonne chasing on defense.

"I was most proud when we turned our offense over with three and a half minutes to play and we took 2 minutes off the clock," Caillouet said. "We showed some specialty there. We got great movement, and it was fun to watch. Hopefully we can take that one good thing from this game."

TERREBONNE 53, H.L. BOURGEOIS 31 (GIRLS)

At Gray before the boys game, the Lady Tigers got 14 points from Tyroneeka Howard and 10 points from Royneisha James in improving to 13-8 overall and 4-0 in District 7-5A.

Darian Dees and Waneka Robinson also added nine points each for Terrebonne, which led 15-9 after the first quarter, 24-16 at halftime and 38-25 at the end of the third quarter.

Shannon Jones led the Lady Braves (4-14, 1-3 in district) with 17 points.