DeRidder defeats St. Louis, advances in girls playoffs

By By Warren Arceneaux / American Press

DERIDDER — The DeRidder Lady Dragons dominated the fourth quarter to get a measure of revenge against St. Louis and a return

trip to the Class 4A quarterfinals beating the Saints 61-43 Thursday night.

DeRidder, which ended St. Louis’ 12-game winning streak, will travel to Baton Rouge to play No. 2 seed St. Michael on Monday.

St. Louis (24-9) had beaten DeRidder twice in the regular season en route to the District 4-4A championship. The Saints were in the game most of the

way, narrowing DeRidder’s lead to two points late in the third quarter.

DeRidder (24-8) scored just before the buzzer at the end of the third quarter, then started the fourth with an 11-2 run to

take a 46-33 lead. St. Louis never got closer than nine the rest of the way.

Pre’Franz Dominick scored nine of her game-high 18 points in the final quarter. Shondreka Roberson scored 15 and Tia Youngblood

added 12 for DeRidder.

“We just talked about playing together as a team,” said DeRidder head coach Tammie Gibson. “We have struggled with that all

year because I have five good athletes on the floor. They meshed as one tonight, and I am proud of them. Defensively we set up in a 2-2-1 and they tried to push it up the side, so we just pushed

up the side with them.“

While the Dragons were forcing turnovers on one end, they were taking care of the ball on offense.

“We only had 10 turnovers after having 37 against Teurlings (in a bi-district round win) the other night,” Gibson said. “They

came out ready to play. I am proud of that win, we have had a mental block with St. Louis this year.”

Jada Peltier led St. Louis with 15 points. Mary Guillory added 10. Peltier scored six and Shayla Stevens seven during the

third quarter, when the Saints chopped an eight-point lead to two.

“We had a crucial turnover on the sideline with the score was 35-31, and they converted it into points,” said St. Louis head

coach Tony Johnson. “They did a good job of pressuring the ball. Their halfcourt trap really affected us, we couldn’t get

our guards going; that was trouble for us.

“(In the third quarter) we started balancing things out and shooting the ball a little better. When you play a good team like

DeRidder, you have to shoot the ball well, and we didn’t do that, except the third quarter.

“I am proud of the kids. People did not expect us to be good, but a lot of people would like to be 24-9 and make the second

round of the playoffs.”