Barbe erased four double-digit deficits, but Sulphur repelled each rally and held on to win 53-43 to claim at least a share of the District 3-5A girls basketball championship Tuesday.
It is Sulphur's (26-5, 6-0) first district championship since winning three in a row from 2013 to 2015. Sulphur can win the title outright with a win over Acadiana at home Friday.
"It has been a while," Sulphur head coach Helen LeFevre said. "We are excited about that (district title). We have clinched a share, but we told our kids the job is not over. We don't want to share. We are going to try to take care of business Friday night."
The loss dropped Barbe (13-8, 4-2) out of a tie for second with Lafayette.
"I think that what was working was our intensity," Barbe head coach Shamika Fifer said. "We played together in the second half and the first half.
"The only thing I would say is that our youth really shot us in the foot not having a lot of basketball knowledge. I am proud of them. The first time we came out we lost by 21. This time we lost by 10. We just have to keep working hard and not get down on ourselves. We have to realize that this is a really good team and get ready to play in the playoffs."
Sulphur beat the Bucs by 21 in a nondistrict game nearly a month ago but had a hard time containing freshman phenom Mikaylah Manley.
"We knew with Manley out there they had the ability to do that," LeFevre said "We had three people on her at times, and she was hitting shots. She is a legit player. It took all of us to slow her down."
Manley finished with 22 points, making jumpers, fadeaways and off the dribble while being double- and triple-teamed. Sulphur took a 29-19 lead on a shot in the lane by Gabby Gunter, but Manley nailed a 3-pointer to cut the deficit to seven with 5:55 left in the third quarter. She hit a jumper with three defenders on her to cut Sulphur's lead to 40-35 with 7:01 left in the game.
"Sulphur is well coached and very disciplined," Fifer said. "They came out and put two people on (Manley) and at one time three people on her and she still knocked down some good shots. She is a tough player."
Sulphur pushed its lead back to 10 points on a free throw by Moe Patterson, but the Bucs went on a 6-0 run to cut Sulphur's lead to four with 2:28 left in the third quarter on a shot by Ariel Williams.
The Tors were led by junior forward Abi Massey's 10 points and 15 rebounds, but Sulphur struggled in the lane missing several shots under the goal and Barbe senior Christi Kruger had three blocks.
Sulphur senior Addie Tremie scored 17 points, Gunter finished with 10 points and seven rebounds and Patterson had nine points and nine rebounds.
Barbe scored first, but Sulphur went on an 11-0 run to assert itself early.
Barbe's Maya Guillory turned a steal into a layup to cut Sulphur's lead to 23-19 with 12 seconds left in the first half. Guillory finished with 10 points.
Sulphur (26-5, 6-0): Addie Tremie 17, Abi Massey 10, Gabby Gunter 10. Barbe (13-8, 4-2): Mikaylah Manley 22, Maya Guillory 10.