Lady Bulldogs roll over St. John to open district

St. John's Payton Passantino and Shelbi Strickland battle for a rebound in the second quarter of the Lady Eagles' 66-27 District 8-1A opening loss to Ascension Catholic on Tuesday. 
POST SOUTH PHOTO/Peter Silas Pasqua

PLAQUEMINE - Ascension Catholic High School built a 12-point first quarter lead and never looked back in a 66-27 victory over archrival St. John in the District 8-1A opener on Tuesday night at SJHS' gym.

The Lady Eagles (6-11, 0-1), under coach Chase Mancuso, also fell to Runnels 51-25 on Tuesday before defeating Christian Life 44-35 Friday. St. John travels to White Castle Friday and hosts West St. John Tuesday.

"Hopefully, we will learn from this and get better," Mancuso said. "We have some games we can compete in but we just have to be consistent. I thought we were in a position to cut the deficit in the first half but we had too many turnovers. We just gave them too many extra opportunities to score and put them on the free throw line. They are a really good team from behind the arc and we just weren't able to defend it."

Shelbi Strickland led St. John with 10 points. Payton Passantino added seven, Samantha Rivet four, Gina Trahan three, Gabby Deslatte two and Hannah Alexander one.

Rae'shaun Melancon had a game-high 25 points including five 3-pointers. Jordynn Brown added 14, Meagan Brooks 11, Kyra Jones nine, Daija Harvey two.

Ascension Catholic led 18-6 going into the second quarter behind a pair of first quarter 3-pointers by Melancon.

Rivet's jumper opened the second quarter before Strickland fed Passantino inside off an inbounds pass but the Lady Bulldogs answered on Brown's putback and Jones' jumper.

Strickland's putback cut it to 27-18 but Ascension Catholic would take the early 12-point lead back into the half by converting 3-of-6 free throws.

Melancon nailed three 3-pointers in the third quarter as the Lady Bulldogs pushed the lead to 47-21 going into the final frame.

Brown had six points in the fourth quarter for Ascension Catholic who converted 19-of-27 from the charity stripe. The Lady Eagles' only second half points came on Deslatte's basket and free throws.

St. John converted 15-of-28 from the free throw line as both Brooks and Jones fouled out.