District starting well for Tigers


Trent Friedel
Saint Mary’s Lady Tigers and Tigers have been doing well in district since losing their opening game against powerhouse Northwood-Lena. After hosting the Gators at home in the opener, the Tigers traveled to Block and Logansport. In between, a Montgomery contest was postponed due to continued Omicron variant Covid-19 concerns.
The boys beat Block 54-46 and the girls won in a one-sided score of 42-28. Lady Tigers also traveled to Louise McGehee and won easily there as well, 48-27. After those victories, the teams took to the road to face rival Logansport Friday, Jan. 21.
The Lady Tigers of SMH were riding a two-game win streak against a weak Logansport team with only two wins on the season. Saint Mary’s had little trouble downing Logansport and exited the gym with a 55-42 victory.

This article published in the Jan. 29, 2021, print edition

The win puts the Lady Tiger record at 8-10 and has them currently sitting in the #19 position in Division IV rankings.
Kelsee Bienvenu led scoring with 23 points. The win placed the Lady Tigers one game out of the top spot in district. Fast forward to Tuesday night and the Lady Tigers thrilled attendees. The game was a back-and-forth contest with the Lady Tigers prevailing at the buzzer. Bienvenu sank the shot to propel her team to a 37-36 victory over LaSalle. The win makes three in a row in advance of a road game against district and class 1A leader Northwood-Lena.
The boys have been a force after their very close game at home against Northwood. They traveled to Logansport and wow what a game. The Tigers had a 53-51 lead with 1:15 to go and Payne Williams was at the line. Williams’ sinks his free throw and the Tigers retreat to defense with a three-point, one possession lead. Logansport quickly inbounds and attempts a three-point shot that only finds iron.
St. Mary’s rebounds and gets the ball into the front court before being fouled with 51.8 remaining. Logansport has fouls to give before St. Mary’s would be in the bonus. The inbounds pass from Adam Parker to Jayden Jackson is successful and he finds Ben Bienvenu cutting to the goal for an easy layup. It’s a two possession lead, 56-51, for SMH with 48 ticks of the clock left. Another three-point attempt is no good and St. Mary’s goes four corners before Mixon Bankston if fouled sending him to the line. Bankston hit one of two and Logansport rushes to shoot a three ball. The shot by #4 is way off but Bankston is called for a foul.
The three free throws are true for Logansport, and it is back to a one possession game with 19.3 ticks. Logansport unexpectedly allows 7 seconds to drain off the clock before fouling Bankston after the inbounds pass. On the next inbounds play, Jackson is alone in the front court and gets the pass and an easy left-handed layup to put the Tigers on top 59-54.
Bienvenu led scoring with 17 points. In Tuesday’s action at home against LaSalle, it was all Saint Mary’s. They had no trouble with the visiting Tiger and won big against LaSalle, 72-26. Bankston scored 23 points and went 5 for 7 from beyond the arc. The stage is set for a district showdown Friday night at Northwood.