One game at a time: Green Devils pull away from Tara to take control of 6-4A

Plaquemine's Clifton Young pulls up in transition in the first half of the Green Devils' 70-48 District 6-4A victory over Tara on Saturday evening. Young had a game-high 24 points converting 10-of-10 free throws in the fourth quarter. 
POST SOUTH PHOTO/Peter Silas Pasqua

BATON ROUGE - Plaquemine Senior High School grabbed the lead in the second quarter before fighting off a rally by Tara and cruising to a 70-48 victory on Saturday evening to take control of District 6-4A standings.

The Green Devils (15-9, 3-0), under coach Donald Ray Johnson, travel to Belaire Friday and host Lutcher Tuesday.

"We have been focusing on team effort," Johnson said. "We need everybody to contribute in every game to beat good teams and our bench has really been key for us.

"This is a real big win. We just want to get back into the playoffs and take it one game at a time." 

Clifton "C.J." Young led the Green Devils with a game-high 24 points that included a 13-point second quarter outburst before converting 10-of-10 free throws in the fourth quarter.

Cameron Garner added 15 including three 3-pointers and 13 points in the third and Louis "Trey" Conerly added 13 kickstarting the Green Devils with two first quarter 3-pointers.

Devante "D.J." Marshall provided nine, Kirkland Jones four and Demetrius Franklin three.

Tyrian Davis led the Trojans with 23 points. Joshua Plain added 10, Darryle Sparks and Noah Plain each four, and Derrick Mitchell, DeCorey London and Patrick Arnold each two.

Plain nailed two 3-pointers to open the contest for Tara who built an early 12-4 but Conerly connected from behind the arc twice in the right corner to quickly cut the deficit.

"Conerly was a starter," Johnson said. "He got a little frustrated when I pulled him out of the starting lineup but he came in and made some big shots."

Young took over in the second quarter using a wide array of scoring tactics. His pair of jumpers put Plaquemine ahead 23-16 after Conerly converted two technical free throws with 5:38 remaining in the half to put the Green Devils ahead for good.

"Thirty-four is our biggest scorer and he really gets us going," Johnson said. "Sometimes he is a little too aggressive and that is how he gets in foul trouble. We pulled him out, got him to settle down and he did a good job for us."

Garner converted three 3-pointers in the third quarter all on the break from the right corner or wing to push the lead to 39-26 but Davis kept Tara within striking distance with 11 points in the frame.

"We try to find (Garner) in transition because we know he is good at making that shot," Johnson said. "That is his job to make open shots."

Garner's pull up jumper put Plaquemine ahead 48-38 going into the fourth quarter following Conerly's 3-pointer from the right wing.

Davis opened the fourth quarter with consecutive baskets but fouled out with 2:15 remaining and Young proceeded to convert 10 consecutive free throws to ice the game.