State championship out of reach for Hahnville’s Tigers
|Photo by Jonathan Menard|
Hahnville’s Jauries Thomas reaches for a loose ball during the Tigers state final showdown with Ouachita. Though Hahnville tied the score at 42-42 heading into the fourth, 12 straight Lion points put the game away.
The Tigers, who were seeded 12th to open up the state tournament, kicked off their unlikely run with a 62-58 win over Airline. Then, they knocked off 5th-seeded Westgate in a 71-70 thriller.
From that point on, Hahnville knew that they were good enough to go toe-to-toe with the best teams in the state.
The Tigers routed East Ascension 63-46 in the quarterfinals, and pulled out a huge win over No. 1 ranked Huntington, 61-51, to advance to the state championship against Ouachita.
The Tigers got off to a slow start to open the contest, and their only lead came in the opening minute of the game.
However, Hahnville stuck with Ouachita, trailing only 14-10 after the first and 30-24 at the half.
In the third quarter, the Tigers outscored Ouachita 18-12, tying up the game at 42-42.
Jared Kinsey, who was the only Hahnville player to score in double figures with 13 points, began the third with a 3-pointer and then hit another with 3:21 left in the quarter to cut Ouachita's lead to 37-33.
After Player of the Game Nick Haywood hit a 3-pointer of his own to put Ouachita back up by seven, Desmond Raymond drove inside, made his shot, and was fouled.
He nailed the free throw to cut the Ouachita lead to 40-36.
With five seconds left in the quarter, Kinsey struck again with a short jumper to tie the score at 42-42.
"We were right there," Hahnville head coach Brian Lumar said. "I think we stepped up our defensive pressure at the end of the third. I didn't think we sustained it."
Ouachita put the game away in the opening minutes of the fourth, scoring 12 straight points to lead the team to a 70-53 victory.
"Defensively, we broke down on a number of occasions, which we're not accustomed to doing," Lumar said.
"We didn't come out with enough energy," he said. "We didn't carry energy from the third into the fourth. We really needed that and that's probably why we came up short."
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