Basketball is just like any other sport. Sometimes you need reserves.
Especially when fouls get involved.
Ouachita head coach Casey Jones prepares for this situation often and it showed against Wossman on Friday night at the Don Redden Memorial Classic.
The Lions (20-1) weren’t fazed by first-half foul trouble against Wossman. They just shook it off, went to the bench and continued pouring it on the Wildcats (6-10) in a 74-49 win.
“I have the upmost confidence in my guys coming off the bench,” Casey Jones said. “I don’t even call them bench players; they’re just guys who don’t go out there first. When we bring them in we don’t lose much so I don’t hesitate to put them in.
“We’ve been playing hard and that’s the thing I’m looking forward to. It’s nice to be back in the Redden finals and I know our guys will be excited about that.”
Cephus Gix started the game off with a three, but the crowd at the Madhouse didn’t see much of him or Zach Hannibal in the first quarter after they both went to the bench with two fouls.
Casey Jones brought in reserves Jay Gill and D’Majio Richard, who helped the Lion cause with a solid offense-defense combination. Gill ended the quarter with four as Ouachita went out front double-digits, 25-15.
Gix returned to the game at the 3:42-mark of the second quarter and got back to his old tricks, hitting another 3 and throwing a bend-the-back pass to Richard for a layup.
Richard send the Madhouse in orbit when he threw down an alley oop from point guard C.J. Jones at the end of the half that gave the Lions a 47-26 lead.
Wossman guard Jarvis Dean held his own in the first half against a Ouachita defense that forced 12 turnovers with 13 points.
The ‘Cats were able to close the gap somewhat with a 10-1 run in the third that made the score 59-42 Lions going into the final quarter.
Gix finished in double-figures for the third consecutive game in ‘The Redden’ with 22 points, while Jarvis Dean led Wossman with 23.
Ouachita and Rayville will meet in the Don Redden championship game on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
Rayville knocks off Carroll at the wire
Carroll and Rayville brought the house down in last year’s Don Redden with one of the more intense games of the tournament.
So it should come as no surprise when they met again in the 2015 field, they did it again.
Rayville once again got the better of Carroll in Redden play, beating the Bulldogs (8-9) 63-57 to advance to Saturday’s championship game.
Clinging to a three point lead, the Hornets (19-1) set up in the half court and were able to pull Carroll out of its zone and into met, which led to two C’Anthony Murphy baskets off backdoor cuts.
“We know Carroll loves to play that zone so if we got the lead, we could make them come out of it and get some good looks and that’s what we did,” Rayville head coach Damon West said. “We’re coming to play tomorrow night in the championship and I know Ouachita is so we’ll see what happens.”
Rayville was able to speed up the game to its frantic pace in the first quarter but struggled to convert that tempo into offense.
Trailing 15-10 entering the second quarter, Carroll was able to stave off some turnover troubles and pull within one at the half after a 16-3 run.
The turnovers couldn’t go away though and they haunted the C-Dogs down the stretch.
Carroll made one last run to briefly take the lead in the fourth quarter behind six-straight points from Jerrell Gundy. Takeaways allowed Rayville to hang around though, and eventually retake the lead.
Jamarion ‘Papa’ Johnson led the Hornets with 18 points. Larry Owens continued his solid tournament by once again scoring 21 points for Carroll. Gundy was right behind Owens with 19.
Ruston gets past Mansfield
After being the surprise of District 2-5A last year, sometimes it’s easy to forget Bakarri Beckwith is only in his second year building a program at Ruston.
And as that process will go, the Bearcats (9-4) have their good and bad nights.
Mansfield got the metaphorical mixed bag out of Ruston, but the ‘Cats still did enough to get the win, 63-58, behind the scoring of Isaiah Buggs and JR Vernon, at the Don Redden Memorial Classic.
“They’re the two coming back that have the most experience and I challenged them at halftime,” Beckwith said. “Most of these guys didn’t play last year so we needed Isaiah and JR to lead us.”
Ruston’s scoring was sluggish for most of the first half, but the Bearcats managed a 10-2 run in the first quarter that gave them a nine-point lead.
Mansfield found some scoring of its own in the second as Ruston struggled with turnover issues. Christian Williams drained back-to-back 3’s that pulled the Wolverines within three and a successful trip to the free-throw line from Robert Sims made the score 25-24 going into the final minute <FZ,1,0,8>of the first half.
Buggs’ layup at the buzzer ensured the Bearcats remained ahead three. Ruston mustered most of its first-half offense around Buggs down low and Vernon’s shooting.
Beckwith had the ‘Cats out of the locker room pushing tempo in the third quarter and it allowed Vernon to attack off the dribble and continue to feed Buggs. Ruston led 49-37 entering the final period.
The Wolverines (3-10) sprung for a 10-3 run in the fourth quarter and were able to cut Ruston’s once double-digit lead to four, but never could make it a one possession game.
Buggs ended his night with a double-double; 16 points and 10 rebounds.
Ruston faces Franklin Parish in the consolation finals on Saturday at 4:40.
Pats take down Rebels in OT
It took overtime, but Franklin Parish did just enough to get past West Monroe 81-76 to open Day 3 of the Don Redden Memorial Classic.
Clinging to a three-point lead in the final minutes of regulation, West Monroe’s Jake Norris buried a 3 that sent the game to OT.
The Patriots (10-7) forced their way back ahead and put the game away by going 7-10 from the free throw line.
Franklin Parish started the first quarter on a 9-2 run before Norris exploded for 10 points that gave the Rebels (7-9) a 17-13 lead.
The Patriots regained the lead at the buzzer on a Kobe Jones 3 right before halftime.
Jones, Jontavius Allen and Darius Johnson powered the Franklin Parish offense.
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CHAMPIONSHIP DAY AT THE DON REDDEN
Consolation Game 1: Bastrop vs. Princeton Hall, 2 p.m.
Consolation Game 2: Mansfield vs. West Monroe, 3:20 p.m.
Consolation Finals: Ruston vs. Franklin Parish, 4:40 p.m.
Third Place Game: Wossman vs. Carroll, 6:00 p.m.
Championship Game: Ouachita vs. Rayville, 7:30 p.m.