Griffins rally by East Ascension in season finale

Peter Silas Pasqua
East Ascension’s DeAundre Smith gathers a rebound ahead of Dutchtown’s Devon Ester and Terrence Cushenberry in the second half of the Griffins’ 49-42 District 6-5A victory?Friday night.

GEISMAR – Dutchtown rallied from a six-point first half deficit to defeat East Ascension 49-42 in the regular season finale at DTHS’ gym Friday night in District 6-5A play.

Jordan Biagas converted two back door passes from Scott Burgess sandwiched around Terrence Cushenberry’s hop in the lane to give the Griffins a 45-38 lead with a minute to play.

Neither team would advance to the postseason as Class 5A playoff brackets were released by the LHSAA Monday. Dutchtown finished 34th in power ratings and East Ascension was 35th.

The victory completed a three-game sweep of East Ascension by Dutchtown beginning with a Tiger Classic victory in November.

Burgess had a game-high 18 points for Dutchtown (14-12, 6-4), while Cushenberry added 11, Biagas provided eight, Devon Ester had three and Donovan McCall and John Williams each had two.

Keith Fleming led East Ascension (16-16, 1-9) with 12 points, while Jamal Steward added 10,?Tyler Wright provided eight, Curtis Watts had seven and DeAundre Smith chipped in five.

East Ascension led 11-8 going into the second quarter behind seven first-quarter points from Fleming. Burgess led Dutchtown with four in the frame.

Watt’s coast to coast layup put the Spartans ahead 20-14 after Wright pulled up in the lane. Cushenberry’s bank drive cut it to 20-18 at halftime after Burgess’ free throws.

Steward’s lane drive opened the second half before Burgess’ putback and Ester’s baseline jumper knotted it up 22-22. Steward’s dish to Fleming inside and free throws put East Ascension ahead by five before Burgess’ pull up jumper and dish to Biagas in transition with 39.5 seconds remaining knotted it up again 27-27 going into the final frame.

Cushenberry’s dish to Biagas on the Griffins’ opening possession preceded Fleming’s free throws before Burgess’ pull up and one. After a penetrating Steward fed Watts inside,?Williams dished to a cutting Cushenberry for a jumper.

Javaughn Williams’ pass out to Smith for a 3-pointer in the left corner knotted it up 34-34. Smith then fed Watts for a 3-pointer in the right corner to tie it again after Cushenberry drove lane.

Burgess’ pull up jumper put the Griffins ahead for good before he fed Biagas. Watts’ dish to Smith off Kadarius Williams’ steal and Steward’s drive in transition cut it to 45-42 before Biagas hit two free throws with 29.2 seconds remaining. Cushenberry reflected the final tally off a feed from Burgess as the final buzzer sounded.

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East Ascension’s Keith Fleming (55) blocks Dutchtown’s Jared Spriggs as Curtis Watts defends in the second half of the Griffins’ 49-42 District 6-5A victory Friday night.