Gautreaux, Rogers headline All-Acadia Parish basketball teams
CROWLEY – Midland’s Jake Gautreaux and Crowley High’s Mercedes Rogers couldn’t be more different.
One is a shooting guard while the other is more a forward/center. One led his team to another deep playoff run while the other had their season cut short due to an oversight.
The one thing that is similar about the duo, however, is the fact that opposing teams planned their game plans around the two and even then, they were hard to stop.
And now, Gautreaux and Rogers share one more thing in common - All-Acadia Parish MVP honors.
Gautreaux heads up a star-studded, six-member boys’ team, while Rogers tops the list on an eight-member girls’ squad.
Gautreaux helped led the Midland Rebels to a 29-8 record and a Class B state quarterfinal appearance where they fell just short to eventual state runner-up Simsboro, 68-57.
“Jake has improved greatly this year,” said Midland coach Todd Briley, who was named the All-Acadia Parish Coach of the Year. “He got much better from last year and he continued to improve as the season went on.”
Gautreaux, who did most of his damage from beyond the 3-point arch, led the Rebels in scoring with 19.5 points per outing and he also logged 2.3 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 3.5 assists.
“Jake was really clutch this year,” said Briley of Gautreaux, who knocked down a number of game-winning shots last season, including a 3-pointer with seven seconds remaining to lift the Rebels to a 50-47 victory over Hathaway in a special district playoff game. “He was pretty steady throughout the year and he did a real good job under pressure. He wanted the ball when the game was on the line.”
For Rogers, it wasn’t the fairy tale ending that she had hoped for during her senior season.
The versatile three-sport athlete finished her prep basketball career on Feb. 8 with a 50-40 victory over Westlake in the Ladies’ regular-season finale. Her team just missed out on a playoff berth despite having to forfeit eight games due to an ineligible player.
But the oversight during the season that led to the forfeitures didn’t discourage Rogers, who led the Ladies in nearly every single category.
“From the time Mercedes came onto the campus as a freshman, she has been an impact player,” said CHS coach Alton Allen. “She has led the team in scoring, rebounding and blocks each year and she has contributed in a way that not many others that have come through Crowley High have.
“And this year, even though it was tough at times, she was the one that took it upon herself to not look at the past and just look at what was ahead of us. She really put forth an effort through the remaining games to do whatever was possible to finish on a positive note.
“We came up a little short, but it wasn’t because of a lack of effort or leadership and determination on her part.”
The McNeese State signee posted a double-double on the year by averaging 14 points and 11 rebounds per game. She also averaged six steals, three blocks and two assists a game.
Rogers’ accomplishments were even more extraordinary considering the fact that she was the main focus of opposing teams’ defenses. She was double teamed in the post nearly every game, even triple teamed at times.
“Everybody knew that she was our go-to player and their main focus most of the time was stopping her,” said Allen of Rogers. “There were times when that did affect her, but there were other times where despite that, she had monster games. She continued to work.
“She knew what she was facing each game and she was still able to get it done on both ends of the floor with either a block or a steal or a basket in the lane.”
Joining Briley and Gautreaux on the boys’ All-Acadia Parish Team are Michael Henry of Rayne, Damon Malbrough of Crowley High, Kade Miller of Northside Christian, Tre Milstead of Notre Dame and Zack Hebert of Iota.
Henry, the District 5-3A MVP, helped lead the Wolves to the league title with a perfect 10-0 record. He averaged 17.3 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 3.4 steals in guiding the Wolves to the Class 3A regionals where they fell to eventual state champion, Carroll, 70-50.
Malbrough was the leader for the Gents, who finished the season with an overall record of 14-15 after falling in the first round of the playoffs to Caldwell, 60-59. The senior guard averaged 11.5 points and 11.5 rebounds on the year.
Miller was a driving force in the Warriors’ success which included a District 7-C championship. The senior guard averaged 19 points, eight rebounds, eight assists, three blocks and 10 steals per game.
Milstead averaged 10.3 points and five rebounds for the Pios while Hebert had 13 points, 10 rebounds and two assists for the Bulldogs.
Honorable mentions on the team include Crowley’s Marcus Williams and Danny Malbrough; Midland’s Darren Arceneaux and Alan Vondenstein; Rayne’s Peyton Larry and Dannie Harmon; Notre Dame’s Luke Habetz; Iota’s Luke Reed and Kyle Smith; Church Point’s Charles Richard and Joseph Garrick and Northside Christian’s Tracy Wilridge and Joseph Trahan.
Notre Dame’s Nolan Theriot earned the All-Acadia Parish Team Coach of the Year honors after leading the Lady Pios to one of their best seasons in recent memory. The Lady Pios compiled a 26-6 record, won the District 4-3A title and entered the playoffs as the No. 4 seed before being ousted in the quarterfinal round by eventual state champion Rayville.
Notre Dame’s Alex Miller and Sam Lyons join Rogers and Theriot on this year’s team. Miller was the Lady Pios’ leading scorer with an average of 12.4 points. She also had 8.3 rebounds, 4.1 steals and 5.7 assists while Lyons averaged 7.6 points, 8.1 rebounds, 2.4 steals and 3.1 assists.
Also making the squad are Iota’s Brittany Johnson, Rayne’s Naosha Leopaul, Northside Christian’s Natalie Hayes, Midland’s Melody Hebert and Church Point’s Mary Citizen.
Johnson paced a young Iota team with 14 points, three rebounds and six assists while Leopaul, the District 5-3A MVP, averaged 10.3 points, six rebounds, and one steal. She also had 21 blocks on the season. Hayes had 15 points and eight rebounds for the Lady Warriors, Hebert pitched in 12 points and seven rebounds and Citizen had 15.6 points, four rebounds and three assists.
Honorable mention’s for the team include Crowley’s Tiara Dugar and Teara Breaux; Notre Dame’s Gabbie Romero and Madelyn LeJeune; Iota’s Mallory Faul and Jillian Boone; Midland’s Katie Woods and Kristen Breaux; Church Point’s Raven Alexander and Shondrika Boast; Rayne’s Charlesha Dugas and Whitley Larry and Northside Christian’s Madisyn Clement.
Boys All-Acadia Parish Baskeball Team
Jake Gautreaux, Midland High School
Damon Malbrough, Crowley High School
Tre Milstead, Notre Dame
Michael Henry, Rayne High School
Kade Miller, Northside Christian
Zack Hebert, Iota High School
Coach of the Year: Todd Briley, Midland
Most Valuable Player: Jake Gautreaux, Midland
Honorable Mentions: Crowley’s Marcus Williams, Danny Malbrough; Church Point’s Charles Richard, Joseph Garrick; Iota’s Luke Reed, Kyle Smith; Midland’s Darren Arceneaux, Alan Vondenstein; Northside Christian’s Tracy Wilridge, Joseph Trahan; Notre Dame’s Luke Habetz and Rayne’s Peyton Larry and Dannie Harmon.
Girls All-Acadia Parish Basketball Team
Mercedes Rogers, Crowley High School
Mary Citizen, Church Point High School
Brittany Johnson, Iota High School
Melody Hebert, Midland High School
Natalie Hayes, Northside Christian
Alex Miller, Notre Dame
Sam Lyons, Notre Dame
Naosha Leopaul, Rayne High School
Coach of the Year: Nolan Theriot, Notre Dame
Most Valuable Player: Mercedes Rogers, Crowley High
Honorable Mentions: Crowley’s Tiara Dugars, Teara Breaux; Church Point’s Raven Alexander, Shondrika Boast; Iota’s Mallory Faul, Jillian Boone; Midland’s Katie Woods, Kristen Breaux; Northside’s Madisyn Clement; Notre Dame’s Gabbie Romero, Madeline LeJeune and Rayne’s Charlesha Dugas and Whitley Larry.