After losing its first district game of the season to Bonnabel last week, Helen Cox had a lot riding on Saturday’s game against L.W. Higgins.
Ranked No. 5 in the New Orleans Advocate’s Super 10 poll, the Cougars needed to bounce back to regain some confidence and remain atop District 8-5A.
“We knew this was a big game for our kid’s confidence going forward,” Cox coach Tyron Mouzon said. “Another loss tonight would have dropped us to second place (in district), and we didn’t want that.”
The Cougars (21-4, 5-1) secured another victory, this time in runaway fashion, by beating Higgins 68-53.
The Hurricanes (15-11, 3-2) had no answer for Cox’s full-court pressure and committed seven turnovers in the third quarter alone.
Junior Roydell Brown’s 15 points help open the flood gates after the two teams had battled to a 29-29 halftime tie. After back-to-back emphatic dunks by Brown, the Cougars went on a 19-3 run to enter the fourth quarter up 48-32.
Senior Kajon Brown tallied eight assists and seven steals to go along with his team-high 18 points. Those eight assists included two alley-oop passes to teammate Brown.
“My coach told me that my job is to be the clean-up man on this team,” Roydell Brown said. “We are stacked with talent, and I know that I have to do my job to continue to make us better.
“We needed to get the momentum back in our direction, so I just did my job. It felt great to help put my team ahead and quiet the crowd in the gym.”
Melvin Frazier scored 10 for the Hurricanes, who made 5-of-7 from beyond the arc in the first half and only 1 of 6 in the second half.
“They hit some big shots to end the (second quarter), but I told my kids not to focus on the score,” Mouzon said. “Once we settled down defensively, we were able to limit their shot selection. We forced them to find another option to score.”
Helen Cox started hot against the host Hurricanes and appeared to be running away with the momentum. However, the Hurricanes battled back to the delight of the crowd.
With just less than two minutes left to play before intermission, Nathan Bailey hit three consecutive 3-pointers to help tie the game at halftime. Bailed had a game-high 19 points.
Cox’s Marlin Veal tacked on eight points in the first 16 minutes. Trevon Riley had six points to help the Cougars lead 16-11 after one quarter.
Riley finished with 11 points and Veal added 10.
Bailey finished with a game-high 19 points, while Davion Sullivan added 12.