BREAUX BRIDGE – It’s no secret that the Breaux Bridge Lady Tigers are going to go as far as Jasmine Leblanc and Caitlin Davis will take them.
But if they are going to get to where they have never been, the Lady Tigers are going to need more than Leblanc and Davis to play well.
On Friday, the Lady Tigers saw someone other than their talented duo step up, as Justice Price proved to be a difference-maker en route to leading Breaux Bridge to an impressive 53-45 win over the Northside Lady Vikings in a pivotal District 5-4A match-up.
“I think it is a big win for the program,” said Lady Tigers assistant coach Scotty Borel said. “It’s a big win for the program because we are now controlling our own destiny in this district.”
Price, who fouled out late in the fourth quarter, just missed recording a double-double in the victory. Price scored nine points, grabbed 15 rebounds and recorded three steals to help the Lady Tigers claim a major road victory and keep pace with St. Thomas More for first place in District 5-4A.
“Our game plan was to get the ball in our two best players’ hands in Jasmine and Caitlin,” Borel said. “But as you can see, Justice Price stepped up and came down with 14 or 15 big rebounds. Justice is just hard-nosed. She’s been here three years with me now, and she has always been a go-getter. The intensity she brought in the second half, especially on rebounding on the defensive side was amazing.”
Price, who scored five points in the first quarter and four in the third, was equally pleased with her performance against the Lady Vikings.
“As a role players, I always take my job very seriously,” Price said. “When Jasmine or Caitlin can’t get the ball or score, it is my job to step up and be that person.”
With Price contributing in every facet of the game, the Lady Tigers (18-3, 4-0) were confident they were in good hands as Leblanc and Davis each turned in their typical solid performances. Leblanc, who is a Louisiana Tech signee, finished with a game-high 24 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks, while Davis chipped in with 17 points, six rebounds, five assists and two steals.
“I always tell them, ‘When you are college players, you are supposed to have either a good game or a great game,’” Borel said. “No matter what level you are playing at that day, you have to bring something to the table. I can’t say enough about these two young ladies, because we’ve been through a lot but they have grown up.”
In the losing effort for the Lady Vikings (16-6, 3-2), Tachiana Ledet finished with a team-high 17 points, while freshman guard JaKaitlyn Matthews contributed with 11 points, five rebounds and four assists.
In a game that was back-and-forth for the most part of the first half that ended 27-21, the Lady Tigers broke it open early in the third quarter with a 8-0 run behind four points each from Price and Davis that extended Breaux Bridge’s lead to 35-21 with 5:45 left in third quarter.
That deficit proved to be too great for the Lady Vikings to overcome as they were able to cut it down to seven 40-33 at the end of the third quarter, but that’s as close as they would get as Breaux Bridge outscored them 13-12 in the final quarter.
“One of the best wins we have this year, but we still have a lot more to prove,” Borel said. “We have three goals in sight (20 wins, district title and Ladies’ Top 28) and we want to reach them all but in the process we want to get better.”