(Kirk Meche / Special to the American Press)
Last Modified: Friday, March 07, 2014 4:50 PMAfter three days of action in Burton Coliseum the two finalists for the Class 5A girls state basketball championship were determined.
No. 9 Mount Carmel and No. 6 Destrehan will play meet at 6 p.m. Saturday to determine the champion.
Destrehan (32-1) earned its spot in the championship clash by beating No. 15 Helen Cox 70-57 in the first semifinal.
“We did really well in the beginning and got a good lead early,” said Destrehan head coach Angi Butler. “I tell the girls all the time that you want to make a statement. You want to come out and set the pace because usually when you do that things will fall in your favor.”
The Wildcats rode to victory behind freshman guard Cara Ursin, who set a career high with 32 points. Slashing her way to the rim, Ursin scored 20 points in the second half. She also grabbed 14 rebounds for a double-double.
Ursin was assisted in the effort by senior Jordan Dabney who added 18 points.
Leading the way for Helen Cox (25-8) were Tyrionne Martin and Wendion Bibbins who each had 13.
Mount Carmel ...... 70
Denham Springs ...... 52
In the second semifinal of the day Mount Carmel (28-6) used its superior shooting to knock off Top 28 favorites No. 5 Denham Springs (28-4).
The Cubs, who were at an immense size disadvantage, had to rely on their outside shooting and full-court press to pick up the win.
“This year we felt like we had a good chance of being here at the end,” said Mount Carmel head coach Panos Bountovinas. “Tonight I think the girls showed everyone how hard and fast they can play.”
The Cubs finished shooting 56 percent from beyond the 3-point arc. Leading the way was sophomore guard Paige Franckiewicz, who came off the bench to hit 5 of 6 3-point attempts.
“I just knew that every shot took me a little bit closer to the final buzzer, which meant we were one step closer to the (state championship) game,” Franckiewicz said.
Senior guard Jennifer Clark joined in on the shooting fest to score a game-high 21 points.
Leading the way for Denham Springs was Caletria Curtis, who finished with 19 points and eight rebounds.