LAFAYETTE — A bit of history was going to be made during Friday’s playoff game between No. 14 Teurlings Catholic and No. 19 Franklin Parish.
The Rebels entered looking to end a playoff drought dating to 2005, while the Patriots eyed only their second playoff win ever. Regardless of who came out victorious someone was going to rewrite its’ history.
After the horn sounded, that team ended up being Franklin Parish as the team from northeast Louisiana pulled out a 74-71 overtime victory in the opening round of the Class 4A playoffs.
“We knew one of the two teams tonight would be making history,” Franklin Parish coach David Rader said. “It had been a while since Teurlings won a playoff game… This was a historic win for us.”
“They hit shots all night long,” Teurlings Catholic coach Jake Duiett said. “We knew they shot the ball well, and we knew we could shoot as well. They just got a few more shots to fall than us.”
Franklin Parish (18-12) raced out to a 4-0 lead, but Teurlings Catholic’s Cole Kelley energized the home crowd with a contested 3-pointer. That shot spark a 9-2 run for the Rebels, but the rest of the quarter would be a back-and-forth affair with neither team seizing control.
With less than a minute to go in the opening period, Franklin Parish star Reginald Carter tied the game with three free throws after being fouled by Ike Hidalgo. The Teurlings Catholic post player atoned for that miscue by making a bucket underneath the basket to give the Rebels a 21-19 lead at the end of one quarter.
The second quarter is when Franklin Parish’s Johntavaius “JT” Allen came alive. He scored his team’s first eight points on way to scoring a quarter-high 12 points. Allen sparked the Patriots offense, while the Rebels struggled to score.
Teurlings (23-10) scored 14 points in the period and starters Sage LeBlanc, Hidalgo and Kelley all picked up their second fouls with less than two minutes in the half.
Franklin Parish came out on fire to start the third quarter. Kobe Jones got things started with a jumper, after a bucket by Carter and then a steal and easy layup by Allen made it a 40-35 lead for the Patriots.
Teurlings slowly chipped away as Franklin Parish settled for quick, one-pass jumpers, which didn’t fall. Kelley tied the game with a 3-pointer with 1:52 left, and moments later gave the Rebels a 46-44 lead with a put back at the end of the period.
“It was definitely a game of runs,” Rader said. “They had an early run that put them up by five, and then we had one that put us up by eight. They did a great job of executing late and forcing overtime.”
Franklin Parish controlled the early part of the fourth and built up a six-point lead but Teurlings hung around. After twice cutting the lead to three points, the Rebels tied it by making their free throws down the stretch. Kelley made four straight free throws to tied it at 59 with 1:37 left.
Jones drained a 3-pointer to give the Patriots the lead with 26.1 seconds to go. Kelley answered on the other end with a 3-pointer in the corner. Jones was called for traveling giving Teurlings a chance at winning the game in regulation.
Kelley got the ball and drove the baseline but the ball was stripped and went out of bounds. With 0.9 seconds left, the ball was successfully inbounded, but Kelley’s shot missed the mark and the ensuing put back was blocked.
“I think we were down by eight, and we made a run,” Duiett said. “As I have said all season long, this group doesn’t quit. They don’t get rattled. They proved that tonight.”
In overtime, Grant LaGrange ignited the crowd with a 3-pointer but the lead wouldn’t last.
After a pair of free throws by Kelley extended the lead to 68-65, Jones would draw a foul while shooting a 3-pointer. The Patriots star guard would go 3-for-3 from the line to tie the game.
After sitting a good portion of the fourth because he picked up his fourth foul, Allen check backed in and make an immediate impact. He drove to the basket, drew a foul and successfully convert the three-point play, giving his team a 71-69 lead.
The Patriots extended that lead to 74-71, but the Rebels had one last chance with 4.1 seconds left, but a full-court pass was stolen by Jones.
Kelley led all scorers with 35 points while Allen paced the Patriots with 27.
“It was just us executing down the stretch,” Rader said. “We made the shots when it counted.”