Sole possession of first place in District 4-4A will be on the line when the surging St. Louis Saints host the defending champion DeRidder Dragons.
Each team enters the showdown on a five-game winning streak. DeRidder (17-6, 3-0) has won 10 of its last 12 and 13 straight district games over the past two seasons.
St. Louis (16-8, 2-0) has allowed only 31 points per game during the winning streak and has won its district games by an average of 26 points. DeRidder is averaging 69.8 points per game during its winning streak and has won its district games by an average of 41.7 points.
The Dragons feature a balanced lineup led by point guard Shandreka Roberson and forwards Tia Youngblood and Pre’Franz Dominick.
The Saints have their own inside-outside attack, featuring guard Hillary Henning and forward Jada Peltier.
St. Louis head coach Tony Johnson said the Dragons feast on second chance opportunities.
“Offensive rebounding is what makes them potent offensively, he said. “You have to keep them off the boards. They are very physical on the offensive end. We have to make sure to get hand in thier faces on defense and then block everybody out. We are starting to do multiple things on defense right now, get kids in the right situation. We can use multiple defenses now, the kids are starting to learn. That is how we have been able to hold people to under 40 points per game. We want to play with that same intensity and turn defense into easy offense.”
Johnson said he likes the way his team is playing.
“We are a lot better than early in the season,” he said. “People look at the 8 losses, but they were all against opponents will be 20-25 win teams, not no-name people. Our predistrict schedule prepared us for district.”
NOTE: The Opelousas at St. Louis game that was postponed due to flooding last week will be played Thursday, Feb. 7, with the girls game tipping off at 6 p.m., followed by the boys game.