The Lafayette Christian Academy basketball team sealed the LCA Showcase Classic basketball tournament championship Saturday night with an 87-68 victory against Westgate at the LCA Sportsplex.
The Knights (9-1) avoided a physical or emotional letdown after their 69-67 victory against University High on Friday night and came out strong, outscoring the Tigers (3-6) 26-5 in the first quarter.
“I knew we had the personnel to get the job done, and it would be a matter of how we were going to fare mentally,” LCA coach Byron Starks said. “I knew they were going to be tired, especially those five guys that played a lot last night. … But once we got moving, with our caliber of team, I knew we had a good opportunity to win the game.”
LCA senior guard Kalob LeDoux played less than 16 minutes, but his seven points, combined with his 29-point performance against U-High, earned him the tournament MVP award.
The Knights got their entire roster involved in the victory, with 14 players seeing action and 12 scoring.
After taking a 69-48 lead through three quarters, none of the Knights’ starters played in the final period, as Starks gave his younger players experience against a tall Westgate team.
“I told that last group ‘I’m not subbing anybody in to bail you out, so go out there and seal the deal,’ ” Starks said. “It shows that these kids want to go out there and play. They’ll get more opportunities to play as we get deeper into the season.”
LCA sophomore Greg Williams bounced back from an uncharacteristically quiet offensive night against U-High in which he tallied a season- low four points by shooting 75 percent from the field for a game-high 18 points and eight rebounds.
Five of Williams’ six buckets went in despite contact, and he finished three-point plays on all of them.
“He is human, he’s still a sophomore, and you’re just going to have those nights,” Starks said of Williams’ performance against U-High. “It’s important that when you do have one of those nights you bounce back. He did a great job (Friday night), just struggled offensively, but I thought he did an excellent job (Saturday) to help us seal the deal.”
Williams’ performance this weekend earned him a spot on the all-tournament team, alongside teammates Kalob LeDoux, Jacob LeDoux and Caleb Starks.
Westgate junior guard Anachack Phomthirath also earned all-tournament team honors after scoring a combined 39 points against U-High and Rayne.
Starks said he considered LCA’s first major tournament a success, and he looks forward to how it grows, both in size and in quality, in the coming years.
“The teams that left all said they want to come back,” Starks said. “We’re going to try to have more teams and more high-caliber teams in here next year. It can only go up from here.