Lakeview girls surprise 2A foes

Lakeview girls surprise 2A foes

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Lakeview girls surprise 2A foes

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There haven’t been many surprises in the LHSAA girls state playoffs so far, outside of Ouachita, West Monroe, Natchitoches Central and Southwood getting ousted from 5A in the second round. But the Lakeview Lady Gators of Campti would certainly qualify as one in Class 2A.

Coach Marjorie Cotton’s club, which played No. 1 North Caddo tough in Vivian before falling in a late district contest, lost twice to Red River to finish third in District 1-2A. But the Lady Gators (20-11) will host Doyle (25-5) in quarterfinal action at 6 p.m. on Thursday with a berth in the state semifinals on the line.

“We’re one of those teams that is just waking up. We’ve had the talent, but we weren’t playing with a lot of confidence,” said Cotton, who has coached teams throughout the state. “On the side of luck, we drew a nice position in the bracket – and we’ll take that.”

Cotton said a wakeup call from her seniors is one of the key factors in her team’s upwardly mobile movement. Jayme Johnson, Donyelle Willis, Bre Grayson and Porsche Pattin have each contributed in different ways.

“They started stepping up against North Caddo and they battled to some double-digit rebounds in our first two playoff games,” Cotton said. “Now, if we can start getting some scoring from them, we might just sneak on into the state semifinals. My bigs are getting the shots, they just aren’t converting.”

The Lady Gators feel good about playing at home against a team that has a reputation for disdaining pressure.

“From what I’ve heard, we out-size them, but they have four players who can shoot, including point guard Taylor Underwood, their best,” Cotton said. “If our kids come to play, I’m liking our chances.”

Soccer signing

Captain Shreve midfielder Emily Bryant will sign a letter of acceptance at 9 a.m. on Friday to continue her soccer career at Louisiana College in Pineville.

Lady Gators coach Nick Thompson said Bryant’s tenacity was one of the things that stood out to him.

“And her skill level kept improving throughout the season,” Thompson said. “Over the past two to three years, she put in a lot of time attending camps and getting better.”

Jammed Lady Rebels

While gymnasiums filled with screaming fans are part of the norm at boys playoff games this time of year, it was a bit surprising at not only the number, but the veracity of the fans in the North Caddo gym on Monday night for the Lady Rebels’ second-round battle with Red River.

The gym holds 585 patrons and it was at full capacity for the third meeting of the season between the two district rivals. The fire marshal quit allowing fans to enter sometime after the 6:30 tip. Expect seats to be at a premium on Thursday when the Lady Rebels (30-1) host Redemptorist (23-8) of Baton Rouge with a trip to Burton Coliseum in Lake Charles on the line.

Softball standouts

Among the top performances called into The Times sports department on the first day of softball action was a 3-for-4 effort with a double by Airline’s Katie Smith in a 9-4 loss to Pineville. Parkway’s Hayden Parker also had three hits in her team’s entertaining 10-8 win against Calvary. Kenzie Glover posted a homerun for the Lady Cavs in that contest.

Southwood’s Autumn Greene and pitcher Skylar Scott posted three hits each against Minden, while Stephanie Eastey slammed a homerun for North DeSoto in a 3-2 loss to Byrd. Winning pitchers included Anna Dies (Haughton), Samantha Guile (Parkway), Scott and Sarah Long (Byrd).

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