Morgan City's Sh'Diamond Holly
(The Daily Review/Geoff Stoute)
MCHS Lady Tigers looking for successful district season
The Morgan City Lady Tigers navigated their non-district schedule with a winning record and will be looking for success in District 7-4A action.
With a district that, as of last week’s Class 4A power rankings featured three teams ranked in the top 10, including two in the top five, though, the Lady Tigers certainly will have to come ready to play each night.
Morgan City (11-8 overall, 0-1 in district) dropped its district opener 51-39 at Vandebilt Catholic Friday, a team that is ranked No. 12 in the Division II power rankings.
Tuesday, Morgan City will face Assumption at 6 p.m. in league play in Morgan City. Assumption is ranked No. 5 in Class 4A, while fellow district foes South Terrebonne and South Lafourche are ranked Nos. 4 and 7, respectively. Ellender is just outside the top 10 at No. 11, while Morgan City is ranked No. 21 in 4A.
“It’s a tough district, and we’re going to do our best,” Morgan City Coach Duriel Singleton said.
Morgan City entered this season having to replace Alisha Singleton, a Class 4A Louisiana Sports Writers Association All-State honorable mention selection a year ago. Singleton also earned first-team All-District 7-4A honors.
However, among the team’s returnees was senior Sh’Diamond Holly, a second-team all-district selection a season ago who is closing in on 1,000 career points.
Singleton said that since Holly has joined the team after participating in the Louisiana Volleyball Coaches Association East-West All-Star game, she has been their “go-to team leader” in all aspects.
“”She brought the team play to a different level,” Singleton said. “Just her energy on the court motivates her teammates to play harder.”
One of Morgan City’s seniors, Courtney Welsh, was sidelined early in the season with an injury but returned Friday and is being worked back into the Lady Tigers’ lineup.
“My other point guard had to step up, and she got better, and she’s getting better right now,” Singleton said of junior Anaria Clark’s play in Welsh’s absence. “She still isn’t in the best shape, so she makes a lot of mistakes once she gets tired.
With Welsh back, Singleton said the Lady Tigers will have a better rotation and will be able to rest some players.
“We’re going to see a great improvement,” he said.
Singleton said with Welsh’s skills and knowledge along with Holley, sophomore guard Haylie Crappell’s ability to make the three-pointer and junior Deryon Johnson’s ability to post up in the paint, the Lady Tigers should do well in district.
Crappell is one player who has elevated her play this year for the Lady Tigers, including her passing.
“The thing is I just got to get the other girls to just be ready, because half the time, they’re not in position, and she snaps one of those great passes, and they can’t handle it, but they’re getting better,” Singleton said.
At one point during the preseason December — all of it without Welsh — Morgan City won five straight games. The Lady Tigers were a one-point loss away from having won seven straight.
Other members of the Lady Tigers’ squad are junior India Richardson, sophomores Iesha Huntley, Sydreanna Powell, Nikeisha Paddio; and freshmen Mariah Pleasant and Tyanna Walker.