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Story Archives: Lions, Rebels to meet in Top 28
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|Lions, Rebels to meet in Top 28|
It will be like old times again as the West Monroe Rebels face the Ouachita Lions Thursday night in the Class 5A semi-final round.
The game is part of the Top 28 tournament that began Monday and will conclude with the Class 5A state championship game Saturday evening.
The two teams are no stranger to each other as this will be the seventh meeting between the squads this season.
Ouachita (36-4) holds a 4-2 lead in the previous meetings, including the last game at The Madhouse for the district 2-5A championship.
The West Monroe Rebels lost in the district playoff to the Ouachita, 54-48. The two victories for the Rebels included one at home and one in the championship round of the Twin City Shootout in December, played at Carroll High School.
"I do not think the neutral court will be a factor," Ouachita head coach Casey Jones said. "We have been in this situation before. We have beaten them at the Richwood tournament. For our guys it is the next step in the process and it does not really matter what the name on the other team's jersey is."
West Monroe (26-6) had forced that district championship game with a 51-44 win at West Monroe the night before to close out the regular season.
Ouachita also beat West Monroe in the finals of the Don Redden Classic (59-55), as well as the district contest at Ouachita (61-46) on Feb. 10.
This will mark the second time in three years in the Class 5A semi-finals for the Lions. After feeling they let one slip away against H.L. Bourgeois last year in the quarter-finals, Ouachita is anxious to prove they belong this time around.
West Monroe will be making its second trip to the Top 28 in school history. The Rebels reached the semi-final round in 1994 before losing to St. Augustine High School.
The Purple Knights were the same squad the Rebels beat on Friday to advance to this point in the postseason.
West Monroe overcame a eight point fourth-quarter deficit to defeat St. Augustine in overtime.
Urald King tipped in a missed three-point attempt with under two minutes left to give the Rebels their first lead of the night, 47-46.
West Monroe led 50-48 with under 10 seconds left when DeQuiante Brown sunk a bucket to send the game to overtime.
West Monroe dominated the overtime period with stellar defense. The Rebels held St. Augustine scoreless in the extra frame to propel them to the Top 28.
D.D. Brown led the way for the Rebels with 16 points and King added 14 points and 11 rebounds.
"Coach told us to keep playing," senior guard Chucky Glass said. "It feels great to get to Lafayette. We will be ready."
Over at Ouachita, the Lions were in there own battle against Terrebonne High School. Ouachita was tied with Terrebonne 23-23 at halftime but roared out of the lockers to take the win.
Ouachita outrebounded their opponents 42-22 and kept on the defensive pressure to secure the win.
"Our defense made the difference," Jones said. "We rebounded and played solid defense to earn the victory."
Jeremy Mitchell scored 24 points and Nick Haywood added 19 points for the Lions. A 13-0 third quarter run put the game away for the Lions.