Defending 1A champ East Iberville faces tough road in girls basketball

Staff Report

The East Iberville Lady Tigers have a tough act to follow.

EIHS headed into the 2021-22 slate one year after a Cinderella season that ended with a Class 1A state championship when they edged out Northwood Lena, 50-46, in Hammond.

The only challenge tougher than a state championship win is a repeat, said East Iberville girls head coach Mark Temple, seen here with his Lady Tigers in the 2021 Class 1A state title game against Northwood-Lena last March in Hammond.

That victory came more than 50 years after the girl’s squad at Sunshine High School – the precursor to East Iberville – captured the top prize in girls high school basketball.

A 9-6 start – including wins in five of the past six games – gives head coach Mark Temple hope that the Lady Tigers still have the same fire that fueled their state title run last year.

“We’re looking good, and we’re sixth in the Class 1A power rankings, but it’s hard to follow what we did last season,” he said. “We have younger players learning their roles, so we’re still adjusting.”

Top players for this year’s Lady Tigers include Taylor Gordon, a 5-6 senior point guard, along with fellow senior Ty Mosby, a 5-8 senior shooting guard.

“They’ve given us good leadership thus far in the season, and that’s going to carry us a long way,” Temple said.

Temple also has high hopes for 5-10 sophomore forward Armani Gordon, a 5-10 sophomore forward, and 5-11 freshman post player Kinley Scott.  

The offense needs work before the start of district play, but the defense has made stride early in the season, Temple said.

The Lady Tigers will need their best showings this season when they enter District 7-1A play, particularly against White Castle and St. John, which pose the biggest obstacle to the district title, he said.

“Both of those games will be good matchups for us this year,” he said. “St. John has a very good team this year, while White Castle is always one of those teams that plays its best toward the end of the season.

“It’s not going to be an easy district,” Temple said.

EIHS notched a 56-18 rout over Booker T. Washington on Monday night in New Orleans. Taylor Gordon led the Lady Tigers with 19 points, while Scott bucketed nine.

The Lady Tigers also chalked a 57-36 victory over Tara on Saturday and a 39-27 loss against Crescent City foe Ursuline Academy in games at the Walker Invitational.

East Iberville has also posted wins over Plaquemine and Comeaux, while falling short against Dutchtown and Denham Springs. 

East Iberville resumes action on Monday, Jan. 3 at Breaux Bridge. The Lady Tigers entertain Varnado on Jan. 5.