St. Amant plays flawlessly in blowout of Christian Life

Kyle Riviere
Courtney Julien led the Gators with 25 in their dominant win over Christian Life. Photo by Dewey Keller.

St. Amant's performance against Christian Life last Friday night wasn't perfect, but it was close.

The Gators did everything right. They beat the visiting Crusaders in every phase of the game, and the result was a resounding 74-37 victory. It was St. Amant's fourth win in their last five games.

"We went to Belaire the other night and played a terrible first half and didn't do what we wanted to do," Gator head coach Travis Uzee said. "I really got on them in that second half, and we were lucky to come away with a win in that game.

"Since Monday, we really focused on what the game plan was, what we needed for us to be successful--not anyone else but us. The kids did exactly what we asked them to do."

The Gators exploded out of the gates with two 3-pointers from Nick Fehn and another from Nick Griffin. The three triples gave St. Amant a 16-7 advantage heading into the second quarter.

It was there that Courtney Julien and the Gator defense began to take complete control of the game.

St. Amant forced the Crusaders into tough shots and when they did drive the lane, they drew charges.

Travis Cole came off of the bench to give the Gators some energy at point guard. He came away with a steal and scored a breakaway lay-in to put St. Amant up 11.

Julien then sank two free throws and followed it up with a jumper to build a 25-7 advantage for the Gators. His 12 first-half points helped St. Amant jump to a dominant 31-8 lead at the break.

Christian Life tried to battle back. They cut the deficit to 20, but Fehn hit another three, and Julien made another lay-in to extend the lead to 38-13.

After Ludovic Kader hit a trey to cut the deficit back down to 21, Julien answered with a three of his own and then made a pair of free throws to give St. Amant a 51-21 advantage heading into the fourth.

Even with the huge lead, there was no letdown for the Gator offense. In the fourth, they continued to flawlessly execute with brilliant ball movement as they opened up a 36-point advantage.

In the end, they were able to cruise to the 74-37 victory.

Julien led the way for the Gators with a game-high 25 while Griffin added 14. Fehn's three 3-pointers gave him nine, and Cole gave St. Amant a big boost off of the bench with eight.

"These kids have been working hard all season on shooting, and I think it's finally taking a turn," Uzee said. "We have kids that can shoot it and that's what we have to do: make shots. We've surrounded our team with those opportunities."

Christian Life was led by Kader as he poured in 16.

Coach Uzee thought the win was just what the Gators needed as they head into their district schedule this week.

"We had a five-game stretch before district where we were able to win four out of five," Uzee said. "As coaches, we wanted to win every one but we felt that by winning four out of five, we could have some momentum going into district, and that's exactly what we have."

The victory was St. Amant's third straight and their fourth in five games. It upped their overall record to 13-8.

They'll host McKinley on Friday night for a pivotal district clash.