Strong start for Lady Tigers

Makaila Carter returns as a senior leader and cornerstone for the 2017-18 Lady Tigers.

With a record of 4-3 in its first seven games, Hahnville is eying to make progress this season under second year head coach Arrianna Martin, though Martin is quick to note there’s a lot of work left to do.

The Lady Tigers mix a group of experienced upperclassmen with a talented freshman class and as district play gets rolling this week, Martin said the team’s chemistry is coming along nicely.

“As a coach, you’d love to say ‘we’re undefeated,’ but we’ve grown from our three losses,” Martin said. “We kind of had a lull there because of weather last week, which I hated to see because I thought we were just starting to really come together. We’re feeling each other out, and we’ll see what happens this week.”

Seniors Makaila Carter and YaSah Gale are the team’s top returning starters from a year ago, while freshmen Kamryn Bartholomew and Kori Joseph have already made an impact in their first varsity season.

The team is working through an injury to forward/center Paceley Williams, the team’s tallest player at 5-foot-8, and so far the Tigers’ quickness has been the advantage the team has leaned on to win games.

“Everyone’s working hard and making their time on the court count,” Martin said. “Kamryn and Makaila have been our top scorers so far, but everyone’s pulling their weight … Our quickness has been huge for us. We’re not really a big team, but we’re not struggling to compete.”

Carter, the Tigers’ leading scorer last season, has been a strong leader for the team, notes Martin.

“Makaila’s starting to become a more verbal leader, which we need from her,” Martin said. “She’s still growing as a player. There’s been a lot of pressure on her from her freshman season on, and this year we’re being mindful of getting her rest when she needs it and letting her have that energy to play a strong game at both ends of the court. She’s doing what she needs to do.”

The arrival of Bartholomew is one reason the team has been able to find a little more rest for Carter. The 5-fot-6 freshman guard is a player Martin said has generated excitement, and the coach believes she has a bright future ahead of her.

“She’s very talented and very strong for a freshman,” Martin said. “There’s a lot of expectation with her. Right now, it’s about maturing and growing into her game. She should do well … she can play the one, two or three (positions), so that gives us flexibility, but she’s most comfortable playing guard right now because that’s what she did at R.K. Smith.”

This weekend, Hahnville is set to compete at the Walker High School tournament, which runs Friday and Saturday. Monday, the Tigers travel for district competition to face South Lafourche (5 p.m., JV/V), while next Wednesday the Tigers will host Terrebonne (5 p.m., JV/V).

“I think we can compete with anyone,” Martin said. “It’s a matter of showing up consistently with the right mindset and desire to win.”

At the Central Lafourche tournament, Hahnville earned a decicive victory over E.D. White, 54-14.

Carter scored 17 to lead Hahnville. Bartholomew added nine and Yelah Moses eight.

In its tourney game against Morgan City, Hahnville captured a 55-31 win.

Danae Lorio scored 12, Bartholomew 11 and Carter 10 to lead the Tigers.

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