MIDLAND – With a share of the District 7-B title on the line, the Rebels were at their best Monday evening.
The Rebels, needing a victory to tie Hathaway for the league title and facing an old, bitter rival, raced out to a 15-point lead at the half and extended their advantage in the third quarter, enabling them to walk away with a pivotal 68-50 victory over the Lacassine Cardinals.
The victory boosted the Rebels to 26-7, 9-1 and forced a tiebreaker game against the Hornets Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at Jennings High School.
“We did what we had to do,” said Midland coach Todd Briley following the game. “We controlled the tempo and took care of business. Now, hopefully, we’ll have a good day of practice and get ready to do a good job Wednesday night.”
The playoff game Wednesday has more than just a title on the line. The winner, as with all district champions, has an extra point added to their power rating.
“We need to win this next one to get that extra point because that’s going to be big,” said Briley, whose team was at No. 7 in last week’s power ratings released by the LHSAA. “We need every point we can get because we’d like to move up as high as we can.”
On Monday, it was all Rebels, all night.
The Rebels connected on four 3-pointers in the opening frame, including one just before the buzzer by Jake Gautreaux, to stake a 23-12 advantage. Gautreaux knocked down two long balls in the period while Darren Arceneaux and Devin Gautreaux each hit one.
Alan Vondenstein also had a big quarter, scoring eight of his game-high 19 points in the first frame.
The Rebels added to their lead in the second quarter and took a 37-22 cushion into the break.
The backbreaker for the Cardinals was in the third quarter.
The Rebels got nine more points from Vondenstein in the third and outscored the Cardinals 25-11 to push the lead to 62-33.
Midland scaled back the offense in the fourth, enabling the Cardinals to outscore the Rebels 17-6 in the final eight minutes.
“We gave up some dribble penetration late in the game, but we had a lead and we just pulled it out,” said Briley. “We got ahead and we pretty much controlled the tempo pretty much the whole way.
“We played good. I think we are capable of playing better than that, but we got the job done tonight so I’m happy with that.”
Arceneaux followed Vondenstein with 14 points and Jake Gautreaux had 13. Devin Gautreaux added 10 points, Randy Primeaux scored eight and Stephen Primeaux had four.
Andrew Ardoin, Alan Courville and Anthony Broxton paced the Cardinals with 10 points each.
LADY REBELS 31
MIDLAND – The Midland Lady Rebels were no match for the No. 2-rankked Lacassine Lady Cardinals Monday.
The Lady Cardinals, led by Abbie Melancon’s 22 points, improved to 35-1 overall and finished District 7-B play with a 10-0 record.
Midland fell to 16-19 overall and finished 4-6 in district.
The Lady Rebels had their moments early, but were no match for the Lady Cardinals in the long run.
Katie Woods drained a 3-pointer to start the game and the Lady Rebels took a 6-2 lead following a basket and a free throw from Kristen Breaux.
Woods hit another shot in the lane to give Midland an 8-7 advantage three minutes into the game, but it was the last lead the Lady Rebels would own.
Lacassine went on an 11-5 run to end the quarter and took a 19-12 lead heading into the second frame.
And although the Lady Rebels cut the lead to six (25-19) midway through the second quarter on a Melody Hebert 3-pointer, it wasn’t enough to provide a big spark.Lacassine responded with four straight points to end the half.
And they didn’t stop there.
Hayley Guidry and Melancon took over in the third frame and combined for 11 points as the Lady Cardinals extended their cushion to 48-24.
That same duo combined for 12 more points in the fourth as the Cardinals outscored the Lady Rebels 17-7.
Woods led the Lady Rebels with 10 points and Bethany LeJeune had nine. Hebert added eight points and Breaux finished with four.