Lady Trojans pound Class 4A Wossman

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 11, 2003

FERRIDAY, La. &045; Like buzzards finishing off their prey, the Ferriday girls scarfed down another opponent Friday night to reach the magical 20.

Twenty wins, no losses. Perfect. Untouchable as of yet.

There must not be a lot of elbowroom in the cafeteria line once the Lady Trojans’ basketball team falls in for lunch time.

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&uot;We have no size whatsoever, so we have to use our quickness to beat teams,&uot; Ferriday coach Lisa Abron said. &uot;That’s been the game plan since day one.&uot;

The Lady Cats from Monroe managed to hang around from the opening tip to about three minutes left in the first period.

And then the birds began to hover and then swarm. The Lady Trojans closed the opening period on a 10-2 run and built on that surge in the second with another 11-2 push.

Before Wossman could catch its breath, a two-point deficit had grown to 19, 31-12, with 5:03 to play before halftime.

&uot;I was missing my point guard and had two other girls who were battling the flu,&uot; Lady Cats’ head coach Marjorie Cotton said. &uot;The team didn’t want to quit, though. But we made too many mistakes early on.&uot;

Wossman did make an 11-0 run late in the game, including three 3-pointers, but all it did was shave a possible 40-point loss under 30.

Monique Jones, once again, led the Lady Trojans’ charge with 21 points.

However, more and more as this season progresses, it is clear to see that Jones is not the only reason you should buy a ticket to the Lady Trojans’ show.

&uot;It’s a contribution of all of my players,&uot; Abron said. &uot;More teams are noticing that now. Any time someone scouts us they can see it’s more than her (Jones).&uot;

Abron said much of Ferriday’s success begins with the pressure the backcourt duo of LaShawnda Pryor and Jameca Garrison put on the opponents’ ball handlers.

Time and time again, the Lady Trojans used their intense defense to force Wossman into mistakes and converted those into easy baskets.

Even when Ferriday had put the game away early, it never relented. In the first three minutes of the second half, the Lady Trojans took a 21-point halftime lead and increased it to 30, 54-24, on a bucket from Latasha Cain.

&uot;Practice makes perfect and that’s how we work in practice,&uot; Jones said. &uot;Once we can wear a team down, the easy baskets and points will come to us.&uot;

By halftime, the Lady Trojans big three of Jones, Cain and Pryor had all reached double figures in scoring with 10, 11 and 12, respectively.

Cain finished with 15, while Pryor dropped in 18 points.

Contrastly, Traci Reynolds led Wossman with eight points at the break. Reynolds and Ashley Augurson shared honors as the Lady Cats’ top scorers with 12 apiece.

&uot;We really hung in there as a team,&uot; Cotton said. &uot;I tried to give them some encouraging words from the bench.

&uot;I told them afterward the reason we play such a tough schedule is we can only get better if we play the best.&uot;

There’s certainly some truth in that. But Ferriday made the Lady Cats &045; a good team &045; roll up into a ball.

Every good coach finds a scuff in the armor, though, and Abron is no different.

She was dissatisfied by the Lady Trojans’ poor execution on the glass and their complacency when they took a commanding lead

&uot;We have to do a better job at boxing out. That’s been our biggest downfall this season,&uot; Abron said. &uot;When we meet some of those schools in the playoffs that have bigger girls, they’ll be able to hurt us if we keep this up.&uot;

But Jones’ doesn’t worry as much as her coach.

She’s hungry and knows her teammates are just as thirsty to gobble down district and make amends for falling short in the state semifinals last season.

&uot;My purpose is to play for a state championship. Don’t bother coming out here if you don’t have a purpose,&uot; Jones said. &uot;That’s what I’ve been striving for. Anybody that loves the game as much as I do there must be something higher to reach for.&uot;