Lady Wildcats suffer first district loss in overtime
The Destrehan girls’ basketball is currently tied for first place in District 8-5A with a 6-1 record. Their impressive district mark includes a 40-point victory over Bonnabel and a 39-point win over Higgins.
The Lady Wildcats took a 17-11 lead at the end of the first half, but East St. John went on an 18-11 run in the third to go on top 29-28 heading into the fourth. East St. John looked like they would put Destrehan away early in the period when they increased their lead to 12. However, the Lady Wildcats continued to fight back.
A 3-pointer by Kayla Smothers cut the East St. John advantage to single digits and Destrehan further chipped into the margin with two free throws by Jordan Dabney and a shot by Lexus Wells.
Another score by Alexis Johnson helped tie the contest and send the game into overtime.
However, Destrehan’s early foul troubles cost them when three players - Smothers, Wells and Jasmine Morris - all fouled out in the extra period.
East St. John outscored Destrehan 12-6 in overtime to claim the win.
Despite the loss, the Lady Wildcats are still tied for first place in District 8-5A after beating East St. John earlier in the year. Both teams have identical 6-1 district records. In fact, Destrehan had been on a roll for the last two weeks, crushing Bonnabel 70-30 and cruising past Higgins 58-19. Destrehan also beat rival Hahnville 48-35 last Wednesday behind 15 points from Dabney,
Dabney was that catalyst again for the Lady Wildcats when they improved their district record to 6-0 following Friday’s victory over John Ehret. She finished with 22 points while Kayla Smothers added 13.
Destrehan head coach Angi Butler said her team’s defense has gotten stronger over the course of the season and that both rebounds and steals per game increased once district play began.
"We are playing as a team and playing more aggressively on defense," she said.
Offensively, Destrehan has put up 291 points in their last five games.
"We are becoming more consistent in the paint and have increased our speed on offense, causing more fast breaks," Butler said. "In turn, we are getting more uncontested layups now than we were early on in the season."
While the girls are tied for first in District 8-5A, the Destrehan boys are currently 3-4 in league play after a 64-62 loss to East St. John on Tuesday. Before that defeat, the Wildcats had won two straight by holding on in the fourth quarter to down both Hahnville and John Ehret.
Last Wednesday, Destrehan took a 23-14 halftime lead over the Tigers, only to see Hahnville creep back into the game in the second half. The Tigers inched even closer in the fourth quarter, but shot just 4-of-12 from the free throw line as they lost to the Wildcats, 47-44.
Gary Johnson led Destrehan to the win with 19 points. Teammate Tyron Clark added 14 points.
The Wildcats will return to action on Friday when they host Bonnabel at 6 p.m. They finish out district play by hosting Higgins on Tuesday, Feb. 5 and then traveling to Hahnville on Friday, Feb. 8.
The Destrehan girls will host Bonnabel on Friday at 7:15 p.m. before hosting Higgins on Tuesday, Feb. 5. They wrap up district play when they travel to face Hahnville. That game is scheduled to begin at 7:15 p.m.
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