About a month ago, the Patterson Lumberjacks topped Morgan City High 62-58 for a non-district win over St. Mary Parish foe. On Friday night, the rivaling Lumberjacks and Tigers squared off for the second time in another anticipated cross-town matchup. Patterson looking to continue their winning ways and MC looking to get revenge on the Jacks, the Patterson High gym was packed with solid energy for both squads. After three tightly contested quarters and the game tied at 43-43, Patterson outscored the opposition 25-16 to win by a score of 68-59.
The backcourt duo of Kyler Paul and Elijah Williams combined for 35 to lead the Lumberjack offensive attack. Sophomore standout Kyler Paul scored 17 points by hitting shots from all over the court and going 6-7 from the charity stripe; the PG also dished out multiple assists to set up teammates for open looks. Williams attacked the rim and found his spots in the mid-range to total 18 points on the night. Kai Schexnayder poured in multiple clutch buckets en route to contributing 11 points.
Devonta Grogan led Morgan City with 25 points on the night behind 19 second-half points and four 3-pointers. The 6’3 SG was impressive all night, showing off range from beyond the arc and the confidence of one of the most dynamic players in Louisiana’s 2020. Nylan Francis and Tylan Bennet also contributed 15 points and 13 points, respectively.
In the first half of basketball, both teams went back-and-forth with Patterson taking a 27-26 lead into the break. The final two quarters of basketball was more of the same game – both teams playing high-intensity defense.
Patterson’s head basketball coach Edwin Colbert cited the key to victory, “We stress defense a lot. If you play defense, you give yourself a chance to win. Defense leads to offense. I carry 15 deep and all 15 will play if they’re playing defense and wearing people down all night.”
Late in the third quarter, however, Devonta Grogan found a rhythm and carried Morgan City by knocking down jump shot after jump shot. Patterson stayed in the game by playing smart basketball: letting their defense translate into offense, getting fastbreak points, and attacking the rim. The Lumberjacks earned 6 trips to the free-throw line and shot 8-11 in the third quarter alone to keep it close.
The fourth quarter of basketball was headlined by a 10-0 Patterson spurt to give themselves a 13-point lead halfway through the quarter. Big baskets by Kai Schexnayder and Ty Walton would fend off any hope of a late-game comeback. Along with Schexnayder and Walton, the Lumberjacks converted on 7 free throws to seal the victory.
Colbert discussed his team’s adjustments leading into the fourth quarter, “We had to turn up the pressure on Grogan – number 4 – he's a really good athlete, probably one of the best athletes in the parish. I figured if we can make him make tough decisions; by forcing turnovers, that would give us an opportunity to pull away, and it happened.”
Patterson, currently ranked #13 in Class 3A, improves to 14-9 in their rough regular season slate. The Lumberjacks have built up an impressive resume so far this season with wins over Alexandria, Westgate, South Terrebonne, HLB, and Central Catholic. They also hold close losses to Peabody, Terrebonne, and Rummel. After multiple second-round playoff exits, Patterson seems to be a true contender to make it to Burton Coliseum this year. The difference-maker this season is the breakout year by sophomore Kyler Paul. The whole cast of Elijah Williams, Kai Schexnayder, Tyrone Tillman, and Ty Walton give this team the intensity and defensive ability to compete with any team in 3A. With the District 9-3A slate quickly approaching, Patterson appears to be the favorite to win the district crown and set themselves up for a long playoff run.
Jeremiah Gray, Owner
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