Having tipped off the season against John Curtis two weeks ago, the Hahnville Tigers would have preferred a different opponent for their opening-round draw in the 64th annual CYO Basketball Tournament.
“We were looking for some variety,’’ new Tigers coach Yussef Jasmine said.
When CYO officials were unable to accommodate Jasmine, the Tigers made do and in impressive fashion at that by using a 19-4 third period to record a 66-54 victory against the Patriots Wednesday night at Brother Martin’s Bob Conlin Gymnasium.
Senior guard Glenn Grover Jr. scored scored 10 of his game-high 23 points in the third quarter to spur Hahnville’s to its third victory in as many games.
Junior Kendall Pierre Jr. and sophomore Dylan Lorio each contributed an additional 10 points from their backcourt positions to join Grover as double-digit scorers for the Tigers from District 7-5A, who defeated Curtis, 60-59, at Hahnville on Nov. 16.
“Initially in talking to the people with the CYO, I didn’t want that game,’’ Jasmine said. “But they told me the schedule was made and could not be changed. So I told my guys we were going to use this game to see what kind of progress we made. And we made progress. I was impressed with the way we performed.’’
Hahnville used its third-period surge to overcome a 31-29 halftime deficit and build lead a 48-35 advantage heading into the final eight minutes.
Lorio, Pierre, senior guard Ian Arnold and freshman forward Amone Brown each had single field goals to round out Hahnville’s scoring in the third quarter, with Arnold hitting a 3-pointer.
The Tigers twice expanded their lead to 17 points in the first five minutes of the fourth quarter and Curtis got no closer than 10.
“We’re learning how to put people away,’’ said Jasmine, who served as head coach at nearby East St. John for the previous 13 seasons. “I was pleased with our shot selection, although I thought we backed off of some shots. Overall, I was pleased.’’
Hahnville (3-0) advanced into Thursday’s winner bracket of the 16-team tournament to face East St. John at 7:30 p.m. at Conlin. Curtis (2-4) fell into the losers bracket and faces Brother Martin at 6 p.m. Thursday at Conlin.
Junior guard Andrew Stagni, senior guard Dawson Crosby and senior center Steven Poole scored 15, 13 and 13 points respectively for the Patriots from District 9-5A.
Curtis hit six 3-pointers in the first half in overcoming a 16-13 first-quarter deficit to forge its 31-29 advantage at halftime. Stagni hit three 3-pointers in the first period and four overall while Crosby and sophomore guard Rashad Holmes each contributed two apiece.
The Tigers dominated the Patriots on the boards, finishing with a commanding 42-23 advantage in rebounds.
Senior forward Alonge McClain grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds and blocked one shot while Grover and Lorio each had eight rebounds for the Tigers. Grover also accounted for two of Hahnville’s six three-point field goals.
Poole paced Curtis with eight rebounds and two blocked shots.
“To lead by 17 points against Curtis, which is a pretty good team, is a good thing,’’ Jasmine said. “So I’m pleased. I impressed with where we’re at.’’