Lafayette holds off John Curtis to win girls basketball state title
HAMMOND – Having faced John Curtis Christian a year ago in the Allstate Sugar Bowl National Prep Classic in a tight 69-66 loss, Lafayette High had a good sense of what to expect Saturday afternoon at University Center.
The Lions were prepared for the task and responded like champions when challenged in a 52-46 victory over John Curtis to win the Select Division I state championship, denying the Lady Patriots a seventh consecutive state championship.
Chrysta Narcisse was terrific, scoring 26 points with 15 rebounds, three assists and three steals and earned Most Valuable Player honors.
John Curtis scored the first four points of the game to lead 4-0 and that was the last lead of the game for the Lady Patriots. Lafayette went on a 7-0 run and closed the quarter on an 11-2 run to take a 15-8 lead after one quarter. John Curtis had eight turnovers in the quarter. Narcisse had eight points for the Lady Lions. Imani Daniel scored all eight points for the Lady Patriots.
Lafayette went on a 6-0 run early in the second quarter to take a 23-10 lead before Curtis cut the deficit to 29-20 by the break. Narcisse finished the half with 14 points while Daniel had 15 for the Lady Patriots, making the only six field goals Curtis made in the half. The Lady Patriots made just 6 of 31 field goal attempts in the half (19%) and missed all nine 3-point attempts. Each team had 14 turnovers in the half. Lafayette was 9 of 11 from the free throw line.
The Lady Patriots continued to pressure Lafayette in the third quarter and defense led to offense as Curtis outscored Lafayette 11-6 to cut the deficit to 35-31 going to the fourth quarter.
John Curtis tied the game three times in the fourth quarter, the last time at 39-39 before Lafayette went on an 10-2 run and the Lady Patriots could never recover.
Kira Johnson scored 11 points and had 14 rebounds while Dalayla Blackwell had eight points and eight rebounds for the Lady Lions.
The Lady Patriots did not help themselves on a poor shooting afternoon, making just 17 of 61 field goal attempts (28%). Curtis really struggled at the free throw line, making just 11 of 24 attempts, including 3 of 9 in the fourth quarter. The Lady Patriots made just 1 of 17 from 3-point range.
Imani Daniel led John Curtis with 23 points, 10 rebounds and seven steals while Jania Holmes had 12 points and six rebounds. Ke’sonja Nelson finished with nine points and four rebounds.
The state title is the second for Lafayette, which won the Class 5A state championship in 2012.
John Curtis 8 12 11 15 — 46
Lafayette 15 14 6 17 — 52
— LHSAA (@LHSAAsports) March 4, 2023
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Born and raised in the New Orleans area, CCSE CEO Ken Trahan has been a sports media fixture in the community for nearly four decades. Ken started NewOrleans.com/Sports with Bill Hammack and Don Jones in 2008. In 2011, the site became SportsNOLA.com. On August 1, 2017, Ken helped launch CrescentCitySports.com. Having accumulated national awards/recognition (National Sports Media Association, National Football…