Lady Pios top Crowley in 3A playoff opener
MIDLAND – Notre Dame Lady Pios coach Nolan Theriot expected a battle heading into Monday’s Class 3A bi-district playoff game against district and cross-town rival Crowley High.
And that’s exactly what it was.
For the first 11 minutes, anyway.
The Lady Pios and the Ladies traded baskets for the better part of the first two quarters and were tied at 16-16 with five minutes to go in the second frame.
That’ was about as much of a battle as it got.
The Lady Pios, led by Marie Ledet, went on a 15-4 run to end the half and never looked back in coasting to a 53-40 Class AAA bi-district victory over the Ladies.
“I think we executed what we came in here to do,” said Theriot, whose squad will travel to Richwood Thursday for a regional playoff contest. “Early on, I think there was a little jitters on both sides, but that’s to be expected. But I was really impressed that we executed the gameplan. We got the shots we looked for.
“There were a few times that we came down and took some quick shots with no one under the basket and that’s a no-no. And I would have liked to see us finish a little stronger. But all-in-all I was pleased with our effort.”
Theriot was especially pleased with his team’s ability to score from outside. The Lady Pios knocked down three straight 3-pointers in the second quarter and added three more in the third that led to a 48-29 lead.
“We have been working on protecting the perimeter and sometimes we did (tonight) and other times we didn’t,” said CHS coach Alton Allen, whose squad finished the season with a record of 14-13. “And when we didn’t, they knocked them down. At times, we lost track of their shooters and you can’t do that with they way they shoot.”
Ledet did most of the damage for the Lady Pios, scoring 14 of her game-high 21 points in the second half. She hit two 3-pointers in the third quarter and finished the frame with 10 points.
“What we saw tonight was a very confident Marie Ledet,” said Theriot. “She was ill yesterday and we weren’t sure what we’d get out of her. But if she was sick today, you couldn’t tell. If that’s how she plays when she’s sick, I hope she’s sick again Thursday.”
Alex Miller was also hot from the perimeter. She scored all nine of her points from beyond the arch while Mallory Chiasson and Gabbie Romero each had one 3-pointer.
“We’ve been shooting the ball pretty well from the outside lately,” said Theriot. “Alex, Gabbie and Mal all knocked down some shots. Marie kind of stands out because her threes came at some times where we kind of extended our lead. But the girls seem to really be finding each other in rhythm and I think that’s part of the reason we’re shooting the ball so well.”
The Ladies trailed by as many as 19 points but they were able to outscore the Lady Pios 11-5 in the fourth quarter.
Tiara Dugar scored seven of her 19 points in the final eight minutes. She also had three 3-pointers on the night.
Junior standout Mercedes Rogers pitched in 10 points in the loss while Sara Woodard had eight and Raven Ardoin had three.
Sam Lyons and Chiasson each had seven points for the Lady Pios. Romero added six and Mary Charles had three.
“You know, we are playing well at the right time,” said Theriot. “It’s just a shame that we had to meet up in the first round because I think we are both good enough to be in the second round. Crowley really plays hard and I think they would have beaten someone else tonight had we not run into each other.”