LAFAYETTE — Sunday’s game in the Sunkist Shootout between Comeaux and Carencro never appeared to be in doubt, but it was.
Comeaux’s Jaelon Lagard had a great look at a 3-pointer to win the game as time expired. It fell short and Carencro escaped with the 40-38 win.
From midway through the third quarter to the six-minute mark in the fourth quarter, the Bears were held without a point. In the process, Comeaux went on a 8-0 run and closed a 10-point lead to two.
“Every time I looked up, I felt like the game was taking forever,” Carencro coach Chris Kovatch said. “The score never moved. The clock never moved, and Comeaux prides themselves on a great half-court game. We didn’t want that to happen, and early on we were controlling it, but we ended up with the wrong kids on the floor at the wrong times.”
Kovatch said he can’t put his finger on why the Bears continue to allow opponents back into games. Carencro continued to fire 3-pointers despite only hitting one for the game. Kovatch said the players on the court have to better grasp game situations.
“We’re telling them, but they’re on the court playing,” Kovatch said. “That light has to go off in their head to maybe pump fake and drive instead of taking a poor shot. We knew we didn’t match up well with Comeaux. They are so big. We wanted to take them off the dribble a lot and play some one-on-one drives. We didn’t do a very good job of that.”
Kovatch said it was also hard to get used to officiating, which at times was a bit inconsistent. The inconstency perhaps played into the Bears not being able to get into a rhythm.
“I thought a few times where I thought we had taken charges, but we didn’t get the calls,” Kovatch said. “That is something we hang our hat on. We never really got into it from that end and we never got that call.
“On the offensive end, I thought there was a lot of contact that never got call and some times very little contact that did get called. I don’t think our kids adjusted very well to that. It threw us off a little and we settled for shots that we shouldn’t have.”
Still, Carencro came up with the win to move into the semifinals of the Sunkist Shootout. Kovatch called the tournament the premier tournament in the state and said this Bears team is his most talented. Kovatch said the biggest hurdle to having a really special season is keeping his players patient through the process.
“We want to win every game,” Kovatch said. “The physical components are there. We aren’t big, but we can be very good. the biggest thing is finding consistency night in and night out with guys understanding their roles. We don’t want to win one playoff game or two playoff games. We want to win five. These guys are dynamic and we just hope we continue to play well in this tournament and get these guys on track.”