By Trent Friedel
The Saint Mary’s and Natchitoches Central basketball teams took to the road last week to compete in the Walk-Ons invitational tournament at Tioga High School. Both teams exerted their will in three rounds of competition. The Tigers took on Georgetown and posted an impressive 80-39 victory and improved their record to 4-0. Thomas Howell was on fire scoring 35 points and snagging 20 rebounds while also blocking 5 shots. The second contest for the Tigers was a red hot Buckeye team coming in undefeated at 10-0. Tigers win in OT 54-53 and hand Buckeye their first loss of the season. Parker Bankston led scoring in this one with 19 points. The last contest matched the Tigers against Avoyelles Charter. Howell scored 23 and pulled down 18 boards in this contest and was aided by 11 points each from Bailey Shelton and Jared Elie. They pulled out the victory 55-52 and go undefeated for the three days of play.
Coach Kern had this to say about his squad, “We did a great job fighting through adversity tonight, down five with 1:26 and battling back was big time. Great four road wins this week for us.” The Tigers beat the #3 team in class 4A Buckeye and the #2 team in 2A Avoyelles. Saint Mary’s is undefeated on the season 6-0. Day two of action had the Chiefs playing Carencro. The Chiefs emerge victorious 59-50. The next action for Natchitoches Central would be Captain Shreve. They would again impress those attending with a commanding victory scoring 55 points and allowing only 30 from the competition. Brian White had 18 points in this contest and was aided by Tony Preylo with 9 and Desmond Vaughn had 8. Final action for Natchitoches had them playing host school Tioga.
In a battle of tribes, the NCHS Chiefs proved too much for the host school to handle. Central topped Tioga 65-40 with White scoring 26 points, Vaughn added 13 and Calvin Carpenter had 11. The Chiefs are also perfect on the season to this point 9-0. Coach Micah Coleman remarked on the tournament, “Tough week, tough opponents but tougher Chiefs. I’m proud of my boys.” The Chiefs travel next to Shreveport to play the Loyola Flyers.