Lincoln Prep, Choudrant, Simsboro to start playoffs on road

By T. Scott Boatright


Three Lincoln Parish girls basketball teams will open postseason play on the road later this week. 

Lincoln Preparatory School, seeded 20th among the 24 Class 1A teams involved in postseason play, stands at 4-18 on the season and will play at 13th-seeded East Beauregard on Friday.
East Beauregard went 10-17 in regular-season play.

The game will be played Thursday at 6 p.m. Tickets are $8 at the door.

“I just got some film on them a day or so ago,” Hearn said about East Beauregard. “They’re very fast and very athletic. They trap a lot. They trapped the whole game I saw with a little diamond press, a little 2-2-1, so they’re extremely scrappy — extremely scrappy.”

Tiyan Heard, one of two seniors on the team, leads the Lady Panthers with 14 points per game, but Hearn said he’s going to need more offensive output from his younger players for Lincoln Prep to get the chance to pull off a road win.

“It’s been a rough season. We had some things going on and then had COVID,” Hearn said. “We’re finally up to full strength and are playing better. We had a close game against Arcadia recently and they’re the No. 5 ranked team. We ended up losing by one. So I know we’re able to defend. We just have to get some scoring from some of our younger girls. We’ll just see. We’ll build on what we’ve seen some success with – playing tough defense and trying to run when we can.”

The Choudrant Lady Aggies are the No. 19 seed while the Simsboro Lady Tigers are seeded 24th in Class B.

Choudrant, which stands at 17-13, will face a familiar foe as the Lady Aggies play at district foe Weston, the 14th seed, at 6 p.m. Thursday.

Tickets will cost $8 each and will be available at the door.

The Lady Aggies are coming off a 64-54 home win over the Lady Wolves but fell by six points at Weston on Feb. 1.

“It’s nice to play someone we’re familiar with, but they’re also familiar with us too,” Lady Aggies coach Geoffrey Underwood said about opening the playoffs against Weston. “So we’ll see what happens. They’ve got some really good scorers, so we’re really going to have to step up our defensive game. They put 54 points on us in that last game, but we were hot on the right now and were able to eek one out.

“But if we don’t play good defense and rebound, we’ll be at home with no more games in the second round.

One thing Aggie fans can count on happening is strong play from senior Kylee Portilloz, who just went over the 1,500 career point barrier for Choudrant.

“She’s really come on lately,” Underwood said. “She’s really doing the little things. She’s always been able to score, but she’s averaging more than 14 rebounds a game and has really taken on a leadership role. She’s a big part of our success in more than just scoring points.”

Underwood also has some younger Aggies who have turned things up as the season has progressed.

“One of our juniors, Mattie Johnson, has really picked it up during the district season,” Underwood said. “She’s played a lot of minutes throughout her career but has really found her offensive stride recently. She’s scoring, she’s rebounding and playing defense. She’s been a big key.”

Simsboro went 8-19 during the regular season and will play at ninth-seeded Anacoco, which stands at 19-13 heading into the playoffs.

Tip-off is set for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday and tickets will cost $7.

“They’re huge inside and want to wear you out at the goal,” Simsboro coach Adrian Hester said about Anacoco. “They have a 6-4 big girl, who is really good with her feet and dominates inside. They love to play through her.”

The Lady Tigers will counter with 5-2 junior point guard Ikeia Brown, who has poured in 40 or more points multiple times this season, trying to use her speed to get around the bigger Lady Indians.

“It’s going to come down to our guards pressuring up top,” Hester said. “I think we can win the guard battle. If we can do that and run the floor, I think it’s to our advantage.”

Hester said he believes in his team and the way his Lady Tigers have been playing as of late.

“If we come in and do the fundamental things — box out, rebound and run — we’re a very good team when we make all of those things happen,” Hester said. “A total team defensive effort is what it’s going to take. We’re going to have to win it on that end of the floor.”

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