N. Central subdues WCA

By Tom Dodge

The Crusader faithful filled the gym, screaming its support but when the night was over, North Central quieted the Westminster crowd with a pair of hard-fought wins that were closer than the final scores indicated.
In the girls game, Tasha Tanner scored 21 points and Donisha Durisseau chipped in 16 points to lead the No. 2 ranked Lady Hurricanes to a 55-32 win.
"We changed our defense tonight," North Central head coach Vanessa Taylor said after the win. "They tried to freeze the ball and we tried something we have never done in practice and I was happy that the girls caught on.
"In the playoffs, you have to be able to change to whatever is happening," Taylor said.
North Central held a slim 12-10 advantage after the first quarter as Westminster's (7-9, 0-5) Sarah Brown scored four of her team high 10 points in the period.
The Lady Hurricanes exploded for a 8-0 run to begin the second period, including a pair of three pointers from Tanner and Apollonia Chambers.
After Brown hit a pair of free throws to close the gap to 22-14 midway through the period, North Central mounted a 10-2 run, again sparked by treys this time from Durisseau and Britni Rue.
A 6-2 run by the Lady Hurricanes (18-2, 5-0) at the end of the period pushed North Central ahead 38-18 at intermission.
The third quarter was dominated by defense as North Central outscored WCA 7-4 in the period.
Tanner scored five points for the Lady Hurricanes in the quarter, while Laura Smith scored all four points for WCA.
The second half battle continued in the fourth quarter as North Central outlasted the Lady Crusaders for a 12-10 advantage.
Tanner pushed in five points for the Lady Hurricanes in the first two minutes for her final points of the contest.
Brown and Danie Meche each drilled a three pointer late in the period to pull Westminster closer, but North Central remained undefeated in district play with a 55-32 victory.
"We tried to press in the first half to keep the game close," WCA head coach Roy Young said. "We went to the spread to hold the ball but when we went down so many points we had to put points on the board.
"Their athleticism took over and we missed easy shots."
North Central 55, Westminster 32
NORTH CENTRAL (55) Donisha Durisseau 16, Trikina Roberts 2, Tasha Tanner 21, Appolona Chambers 5, Valencia Harris 4, Brittany Rue 3, Quanicha Coleman 4. Totals 15 (7) 4-7 55.
WESTMINSTER (32) Danie Meche 4, Sarah Brown 10, Abby Olivier 3, Brooke Ardoin 3, Laura Smith 6, Katherine Meyers 3. Totals 8 (2) 8-15 32.
NCHS 12 24 7 12 - 55
WCA 10 8 4 10 - 32
3-pointers: NCHS, Durusseau 2, Tanner 3, Chambers, Rue; WCA, Meche, Brown. Total fouls: NCHS 17, WCA 10. Fouled out: none. Technicals: none. Record: NCHS 18-2, 5-0. WCA 7-9, 0-5. Next: NCHS plays at St. Edmund on Tuesday. WCA hosts False River on Tuesday.
North Central 81, WCA 69
In the boys action, the Westminster Crusaders fought gallantly before falling to the sixth ranked Hurricanes, 81-69.
Derrick Coleman, who finished with 25 points to lead the Hurricanes, began with four three pointers in the first six minutes to lift North Central to a 22-14 opening period advantage.
Twin bother Errick Coleman added eight points in the first quarter including a slam dunk and several drives to the bucket. Coleman finished with 18 points on the night.
"It wasn't an easy win," North Central head coach Butch Fontenot said as the Hurricanes (15-7, 5-0) had five players back after improving their grades . "We spent the first half trying to get the right combination together and I think we are going to get better.
"I hope the rest of the games are not this exciting," Fontenot joked about his team's first place grip on District 6-1A.
Westminster's John Myers, who finished with 14 points, kept the Crusaders in the game early with several inside buckets and crucial rebounds at both ends of the court.
A technical foul on Westminster coach Grayson Standiford to open the second period seemed to excite both teams as the Hurricanes and Crusaders exchanged a flurry of three pointers.
Derrick Coleman and Lennox Bates drilled treys sandwiched around a rainmaker from WCA's Mike Donahue.
Ryan McCombie excited the Crusader crowd with a long range two-pointer and Donahue raised the roof with another three pointer to close the gap to 30-25 with 4:25 left before intermission.
North Central went on a 7-3 run to close out the period, aided by a technical foul called against John Myers when he slammed down the basketball in protest to an official's call.
North Central's 37-28 halftime margin would be challenged in the third quarter as WCA outscored the Hurricanes 20-17 in the period.
After the two teams battled to a 6-6 tie in the opening minutes of the quarter, WCA mounted an 12-3 run aided by a trey by Donahue and inside buckets from Myers and Patrick Vice.
North Central regrouped for a 8-5 surge led by the Coleman twins to finish the third stanza ahead, 54-48.
The fourth quarter reach a fever pitch as the highest production for both teams, but the advantage remained with the Hurricanes.
"We got it to six or seven points in the early fourth quarter," WCA head coach Standiford said. "We couldn't keep them off the boards. They shoot and send five to the glass and it is hard to box out five players."
A three-pointer by Derrick Coleman and a dunk by Issac Dixon brought the visiting Hurricane fans to their feet, but WCA's Randall Bulliard quickly responded with a three pointer.
Coleman finished with seven three pointers in the game.

Westminster's Andrew Cheuka (24) brings down a rebound as North Central's Errick Coleman (24) and Chris Robinson (42) defends on the play Friday at WCA.
Photo by David Gremillion
WCA's Randall Bulliard fights with North Central's Issac Dixon for a loose ball on Friday night.
Photo by David Gremillion
Another dunk by Dixon closed out a 6-2 Hurricane run midway through the final period as North Central attempted to put the game away.
But WCA would not go quietly as the Crusaders held a 8-3 run but Dixon responded with six straight points including two monsterous dunks before fouling out at the 1:00 mark. Dixon finished with 15 points in the game.
Westminster closed out the game with a 6-2 run as McCombie hit four at the charity stripe and finished with 22 points on the night.
Donahue chipped in 17 and Myers added 14 points for the Crusaders, while Bulliard hit the game's last bucket and contributed 10 points in the loss.
"The effort was there," Standiford said of his team. "We thought if we scored between 65 and 75 points we would be okay. But I didn't think we would give up 81 points. I thought we would play better defense than that."
Standiford contributed part of the loss to poor foul shooting by his team, who finished 20-of-35 at the free throw line, missing 13 in the first half
Even with the loss, WCA (12-3, 3-2) is in contention in the district behind North Central and second place Opelousas Catholic.
North Central 81, Westminster 69
NORTH CENTRAL (81) Errick Coleman 18, Derrick Coleman 25, Lennox Bates 12, Issac Dixon 15, Christopher Robinson 3, Joseph Simien 2, Calvin Alfred 2, Theodore Chambers 4. Team Totals: 22 (8) 13-21 81.
WESTMINSTER (69) Patrick Vice 5, Ben Frith 1, Randall Bulliard 10, Mike Donahue 17, John Myers 14, Ryan McCombie 22. Team Totals: 17 (5) 20-35 69.
NCHS 22 15 17 27 - 81
WCA 14 14 20 21 - 69
3-pointers: NCHS D. Coleman 7, Spates. WCA Bulliard, McCombie, Donahue 3. Total Fouls: NCHS 24, WCA 20. Foul Outs: NCHS E. Coleman, Dixon. Technicals: WCA coach, Myers. Records: NCHS 15-7, 5-0. WCA 12-3, 3-2. Next: WCA plays host to False River on Tuesday, North Central visits St. Ed's on Tuesday.

Originally published January 15, 2006