BATON ROUGE - Live Oak leading scorer Dijone Flowers sat out more than three minutes in the fourth quarter of the Eagles girls basketball game at St. Michael Wednesday evening, but there were no worries.
Flowers wasn’t in foul trouble or hampered by an injury. Live Oak had built a comfortable lead by that time allowing the Eagles to coast in for a 45-32 win over the Warriors.
With Flowers scoring 28 points and making five steals, Live Oak (12-5) picked up its sixth consecutive win.
Eagles coach Michelle Yawn said there is still room for improvement.
“We didn’t have good energy,” Yawn said. “It was very sloppy for us. St. Michael’s worked really hard, they’re well-coached, and I think it kind of stunned us at first when they came out and hit the first shot.”
That first shot, a 3-pointer by the Warriors Caitlin Brumfield, came in the game’s first minute. Live Oak didn’t score until Zyriah Pink’s inside basket midway through the quarter to make it 3-2 St. Michael.
Brumfield and Amanda Stewart led St. Michael (12-9) with nine points each.
Flowers, who missed her first five shots, hit a 3-pointer to make it 5-3 late in the first quarter, and the Eagles went on to lead 7-5.
The difference came when Live Oak forced six turnovers in the first four minutes of the second quarter. Flowers scored eight points, and Harmony Johnson turned in a three-point play as the Eagles outscored St. Michael 13-4.
“We created turnovers,” Yawn said. “I know (Flowers) got her hand on the ball a lot and had some open layups. In the third quarter, I wanted us to score on something besides transition. I wanted us to score out of our offense, but it didn’t happen. I told the girls, when we face other teams, we can’t play like that.”
Johnson, who finished with 10 points, hit a layup with 4:03 left in the second to give Live Oak a 20-9 lead.
St. Michael fought back to get within 21-15, but Flowers made three baskets in the final minute of the half and Live Oak took a 27-17 halftime lead.
In the third quarter, Johnson scored on a drive, and Flowers hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key as Live Oak moved ahead 32-19.
St. Michael was unable to get closer than 11 points the rest of the game.
After the Eagles win, Yawn didn’t downplay its importance, but stressed that her team needs to play better to reach its goals
“I’m not going to complain about a win, but I know we can play better,” Yawn said. “I don’t know when we’ve won five straight games over the winter break like that. It was awesome, and winning was great, but I don’t want us to settle...I want us to play good defense, and I want us to control the tempo on offense.”
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