St. Louis girls, Washington-Marion boys open district with wins

By By Warren Arceneaux / American Press

The St. Louis girls and

Washington-Marion boys maintained good, early season form on the opening

night of District 4-4A basketball

play on Tuesday, with the Saints beating W-M 49-31 in the girls

game, and the homestanding Charging Indians winning the boys

game 58-49.

In the girls game, St. Louis (14-8, 1-0) gave up a basket to start the game then went on a 21-2 run to take control. Jada

Peltier scored 11 of her game-high 23 points during the run.

Saints head coach Tony Johnson said he liked what he saw on both sides of the court.

“We came out ready to play,” Johnson

said. “We had to shut some people down. (Washington-Marion guard

Monasha) Eddie is a

good player. We were able to play good defense and allow 31

points. Our goal is to give up 10 points a quarter, and tonight

we were at 7.5. That says a lot about the girls, they are working

hard on the defensive end.

“Jada is coming out of the shell. She really took it to the next level. That is her job as a senior. As a senior on this team,

Coach Johnson is looking for you to be his leader. We have four of them and they are all great leaders, but the team goes

as Jada goes. Tonight, we were clicking on all cylinders.”

W-M (6-12, 0-1) scored the first seven points of the second quarter to pull within 14, but never got closer. St. Louis responded

with 11 straight points, the first nine by Peltier.

Ashley Cherry W-M with 10 points.

In the boys game, W-M (14-5, 1-0) never trailed and started the second quarter with a 14-2 run to extend a four-point lead

to 16.

“We were running, taking care of the ball and not turning it over,” said W-M head coach Albert Hartwell. “We were controlling

the ball, seeing each other, making good passes and playing good defense.”

St. Louis (8-13, 0-1) made a couple of

second-half runs to get back into the game, scoring nine straight in the

third quarter

to get within six, then 10 straight in the fourth quarter to get

within five with 1:09 remaining. W-M scored the final four

points of the game from the free-throw line to seal the win.

“We turned the ball over,” Hartwell

said of the second half. “Everyone was trying to be a hero. That’s the

youth in us. We

try to do things we are not supposed to do. Our kids got inactive

and then we had three or four silly turnovers. We were trying

to get a dunk, got too happy. We can’t lighten up. But, they are

learning.”

Mark Vital led W-M with a game-high 21

points. Karlis Gardner led St. Louis with 11, including four during the

Saints’ fourth-quarter

run.