Iota's Baggett helps lead West to All-Star game victory

NATCHITOCHES – Allison Baggett donned an Iota Lady Bulldog uniform for the last time just over a week ago in her team’s 55-42 loss to John Curtis in the Class 2A championship game in Ruston.

But that wasn’t the last high school basketball game for the Iota standout.

Over the weekend, the UL-Lafayette signee put her skills on display once more, this time against the state’s top prep players in the Louisiana High School Coaches Association All-Star game at Natchitoches Central High School.

And this time, her team came out a winner.

Baggett poured in 10 points in helping lead the West squad to a 100-72 victory over the East.

John Curtis’ Derreyal Youngblood, who edged out Baggett for MVP honors in the 2A title game, scored four points for the East in the losing effort.

Crowley native and St. Thomas More standout Kia Wilridge also contributed in the West’s victory with seven points.

The West squad came out strong behind starters Baggett, Cox’s Kuaneshia Baker and Jennings’ Jayln Johnson. The trio scored the team’s first six baskets as the West ran out to an early double-digit lead.

The East squad closed the gap late in the opening half. Richwood’s Victoria Davis drained a 3-pointer that cut the lead down to five. A few moments later, Davis scored again and the West clung to 36-33 lead.

That is when the West All-Stars took over the game.

Louisiana Tech signee and Benton star Arkeysha Perry drained a deep 3-point shot, which ignited a 13-0 run for the West All-Stars. At the end of the half, the West led 51-37.

The East attempted to close the gap at the start of the second half when West Monroe’s Donlica James’s two-point bucket started a 5-0 run for the team. That would be as close as the East would get as the West proved to be too tough, as speed trumped size in the game.

The West had four players score in double digits. In addition to Johnson’s 15, Perry added 12; Beau Chene’s Tyra Gibson had 11 while Baggett chipped in 10.

The East was paced by Davis who led all scorers with 24 points.

In the boys game, senior Troy Jones of Class 4A state champion Peabody won the game’s MVP trophy, leading the East in a 107-90 victory over the West.

The West was led by Huntington’s Michael Qualls’ 21 points while Ellender’s Gibby Talbot added 19.

The East squad had four players score in double digits. In addition to Jones’ game-high 23, Zachary’s Morris Wright scored 14; Scotlandville’s Cleveland Thomas added 12 and Istrouma’s Jamarcus Weatherspoon had 12.

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