By Barbara Holland, Coushatta Citizen editor
The Red River Bulldogs and Lakeview Gators met Friday, Feb. 9 for a highly anticipated showdown of district rivals. People began lining up before 4 p.m. to guarantee a seat. By the time the game started, the gym was packed. Red River won the opening tip, and C. Moore scored the first basket of the game. Lakeview’s Z. Lewis answered with a 3-pointer, giving them a 3-2 lead. On the other end, J. Davis made a lay-up and a free throw, and RR took back the lead, 5-3.
The Gators scored the next seven points, two by Lewis, two by N. Braden and three by Michael Banks, giving them a 10-5 lead. The Bulldogs answered with a basket by G. McDonald, 10-7. Lakeview scored the final four of the quarter, a 3-pointer and a free throw by Lewis ending it 14-7, Gators. The second quarter opened with the same intense play by both teams. Red River added 14, 10 by E. McDonald and four by Davis. Lakeview added 11, six by D. Young. Lewis and Banks each had two, while Daviion Telsee added a free throw. The first half ended with the Gators maintaining their lead, 25-21. Both teams started slowly in the third.
Two minutes ticked off the clock before either team scored. R. Lemons added two and J. McDonald added a free throw for the Bulldogs. Leandrew Ruffin had four and C. Small had two for the Gators. The Bulldogs chipped away at Gator’s lead, and with 3:48 left, knotted it up at 32-32 after Moore made four free throws.
The lead would change hands twice more before the third ended, 37-35, Bulldogs. RR opened the fourth with five points, 42-35. Lakeview was forced to go to it’s bench as K. Nora, D. Young and L. Ruffin all fouled out. Seventy-two free throws were shot. The Bulldogs were 23-38 at the free throw line, while the Gators were 16-24. RR hung on to their lead and took the win, 60-50.
Scorers for Lakeview Gators were Lewis with 19, Banks 10, Young seven, Ruffin six, Telsee four, Small two and Nora and Udonnis Jones with one each.