Many parish players make first-team all-district

Kyle Riviere
East Ascension's Diniaa McZeal was named the District 5-5A MVP for the second straight season. Photo by Kyle Riviere.

Ascension Parish saw another thrilling season of girl's high-school basketball in 2019.

Five of the six parish schools reached the playoffs, and three of those schools won at least one postseason game. One team made it to the state quarterfinals, and one reached the state semifinals.

As a result, many standouts from these teams were selected to all-district squads this postseason.

On the west bank, Donaldsonville had three players make All-District 10-3A. Those three were Daija Harvey (first team), Jalair Joseph (second team) and Quinntryce Bell (second team).

Also, Ascension Catholic's Kaitlyn Brooks made second-team All-District 6-1A.

There were seven players on the east bank that made the all-district first team.

As expected, East Ascension was the most highly-decorated school from the parish.

The Lady Spartans came into the season as the defending Class 5A state champions, and they lived up to that billing. East Ascension finished the regular season with a 21-2 record.

This included a 12-game winning streak heading into the playoffs. For the second time in three years, East Ascension went undefeated in league play and claimed the District 5-5A championship.

They entered the Class 5A playoffs as the fifth seed. They dominated, beating New Iberia, Chalmette and LaGrange by a combined score of 173-98.

These three overpowering victories punched their ticket to the state semifinals in Alexandria's Rapides Coliseum for a second straight season.

However, their dreams of winning back-to-back state titles were dashed there. They were upset by eventual state champion Captain Shreve.

Head coach Dennis Chandler was named the District 5-5A Coach of the Year. In the past three seasons, Chandler has led the Lady Spartans to an amazing record of 72-7.

Also, for the second straight season, East Ascension senior guard Diniaa McZeal has been named the District 5-5A MVP.

Joining McZeal on the all-district first team was fellow senior guard Tristen Washington.

But East Ascension wasn't the only parish school to field two players on the all-district first team. So did St. Amant and Dutchtown.

The St. Amant Lady Gators had a terrific season that saw them finish 21-8 and make the playoffs for the second straight year.

On the road in round one, they nearly pulled off the upset over No. 13 H.L. Bourgeois, but a strong fourth-quarter push by the Braves gave them a 61-53 victory.

Two St. Amant senior guards made first-team All-District 5-5A. They were Mackenzie Brooks and Kelsi Martine.

The Dutchtown Lady Griffins had a bit of a down year. They finished with just a 14-16 record and missed out on the playoffs.

Still, there were some great individual performances by some of their starters.

Nicholls signee Chelsea Cain earned first-team all-district honors. Also, guard Zaria Harleaux made the first unit.

There was also a first-team selection from Class 1A.

The Ascension Christian Lady Lions had another productive season as they finished 10-7 and entered the Division-IV playoffs as the 12th seed.

In the opening round, they crushed Covenant Christian, 56-29. It was the third straight season in which they won a playoff game.

Although, they were eliminated by fifth-seeded Ouachita Christian in round two.

Leading the charge for the Lady Lions all season was senior guard Alona Washington. Washington was named first-team All-District 6-1A.