Hammond runs away from Gators

Peter Silas Pasqua
St.?Amant’s Dalton Alexander pump fakes Hammond’s Kylan Douglas to cut it to 20-12 in the first quarter of the Tors’ 69-36 victory in the Grady Hornsby Classic Monday.

DENHAM?SPRINGS?– Hammond (2-0) used a 15-4 run to pull away from St. Amant (0-5) in the first quarter and never looked back on way to a 69-36 victory in the Grady Hornsby Classic Monday night at Denham Springs High School’s Hornsby Gym.

The Gators, who return just one starter, knocked the Tors, who return their entire starting lineup, out of the playoffs in the first round last season.

“They didn’t have one senior last year,” St. Amant head coach Gary Duhe said. “They have a very good ball club and are very athletic. When you have 27 turnovers it doesn’t help. We just have to keep working to get better. This time of the year, you are more worried about your team then who you are playing.

“We didn’t move our feet defensively and we didn’t stop penetration and that hurt us. We were trying to play them man and contain but we don’t have the quickness. We probably played more zone in this game than I have had a team play in 30 years. We just have to stay positive.”

Mikel Henry and Kylan Douglas each had 14 apiece for Hammond. Mark Bridgewater added 13 and Domonick McCoy and Terrence Bridges each had eight.

Steve Fulkerson led the Gators with 10 points, while Justin?Manton added seven, Jacky Joseph provided six and Malik Beasley had five.

“We had a little extra incentive playing St. Amant,” Hammond first-year head coach Brent Grigas said. “Coach Duhe is a legend and it was great to coach against him.”

“We have a great nucleus and pretty much everybody returning. Those guards have been playing together their whole lives so they know each other well.”

Douglas’ putback gave Hammond a 20-6 lead in the first quarter before Brandon LeBourgeois’ bucket, Fulkerson’s putback and Manton’s dish to Dalton Alexander inside closed out the stanza.

Fulkerson fed Joseph inside to open the second quarter but Hammond scored the next six points to go ahead 27-14 on Bridgewater’s lay up off a steal. Beasley’s 3-pointer from the top of the key preceded a 14-0 Tor run to close out the half capped by Bridgewater’s dish to Douglas off a steal.

Douglas and Bridgewater’s buckets opened the second half before Fulkerson’s free throws ended the drought.

Jacob Gauthier’s baseline drive cut it to 51-29 going into the final frame after Beasley’s drive, Joseph’s putback and Manton’s reverse.

Caleb Brumfield’s drive with just over a minute to go gave Hammond their biggest lead 69-34 as the Gators managed only seven fourth quarter points.

St. Amant lost to Walker 62-51  Tuesday night in the Gold Dome. The Gators led 25-22 at halftime but were outscored 19-9 in the third quarter.

Fulkerson had a game-high 24 points and Beasley added 16.

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St. Amant's Jacob Gauthier drives against Hammond.