BASKETBALL

White Castle coach aims to top inaugural season with run to title

Staff Report

White Castle boys basketball coach Dewan Carter couldn’t have asked for a much more than he got from his initial season last year.

White Castle boys basketball coach Dewan Carter aims to improve on last season, when the team finished 22-7, losing in the championship game.

In fact, only one thing can make it better than last season: the Class 1A state championship.

Carter led the 2020 Bulldogs to the state championship game last year, where they lost, 51-38, to Arcadia in the 1A title game at Burton Coliseum in Lake Charles. WCHS finished 22-7 last season as they continued a playoff run that began in 1974 and now ranks as one of the longest in Louisiana high school basketball.

Now, the team wants to finish what they started last year, but it won’t be an easy ride.

The Bulldogs lost four starters from last year’s team. Carter is trying to get a rotation in place.

“We just got our football players back, so we’re trying to get them into the groove,” Carter said.

Potential leaders will include Jalan Washington, a 6-2 junior point guard.

The Bulldogs also welcomed several additions to the roster after the football team finished its deep playoff run. They include three seniors – 6-0 guard Hakeem Young, 6-0 point-guard Jacob Green and 6-4 center Omar Carter.

“I think the guard play will be our strong point, where most of our experience will lead us,” Carter said. “We have good leadership with Jalen and Hakeem.”

Success for this year’s Bulldog squad will depend on how much they will eliminate turnovers and limit rebounds, Carter said.

“The football players are going to have to get into basketball mode fast,” he said.

A tournament at Donaldsonville, along with the annual Green Devil Classic at Plaquemine High, will put White Castle against formidable opposition.

They will also play a non-district that includes visits to East Ascension and Dutchtown.

“Games like that always make for a tough schedule,” Carter said. At the end of the year, those games help with the playoff run that factors in.

“We like to play on the road,” he said. “We went to a hostile Donaldsonville environment, and we want to do that, get that playoff atmosphere.”

District 7-1A schedule will play only one round of district games, which will send White Castle on the road for action against potential league leaders Ascension Catholic and East Iberville.

The single-round format helps because it allows the Bulldogs to play larger schools and build up the power-ranking by the time the playoff season rolls into gear.

“We look to play the bigger schools rather than play a team like Ascension Christian twice – it doesn’t help us in the power rankings,” Carter said. “We like to prepare for what lies ahead and getting that experience against tougher schools is what will help us get back to Lake Charles.”