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Contributing Writer

North Central High boys’ basketball coach Basil Brown II hasn’t had much time to learn everything about this players, but he obtained some valuable information from them during the annual St. Landry Parish Basketball Tournament.

And along with gleaning how well his team reacted to a challenge, Brown also watched them win a tournament title.

North Central, which ranks as the top team in Class 1A, captured the boys’ championship Saturday night, beating top-seeded and host Beau Chene 67-57 before a large and raucous crowd.

Brown said after the win that his players wanted to avenge a previous defeat to Beau Chene, which defeated the Hurricanes in the finals of the Ville Platte High Tournament played in November.

North Central was seeded second in the parish tournament by the parish coaches.

“We lost (in Ville Platte) to Beau Chene in a very contested game. Winning this tournament was a real test for them, but we have players here who understand basketball. I think the way they played in the championship game, all of them deserved A+’s,” Brown said.

Senior Reginald Stoner and junior Devion Lavergne carried the Hurricanes offensively in the championship contest. Stoner had a team-leading 23 points. Lavergne added 17 while McKennis Savoy scored 13.

Stoner set the tone early, scoring 12 of the Hurricanes’ first 23 points. Savoy slammed home a couple of thunderous dunks, including one that ignited the crowd just before the game ended.

Brown is the fourth North Central boys’ basketball coach in the last five seasons. That means the Hurricanes have played under several systems.

However Brown said he and the North Central players are adapting to one another as they prepare for the annual post-Christmas Northwest High Basketball Tournament and the start of District 5-1A, a league the program has dominated in recent seasons.

“Coming into a situation where you are the fourth coach in five years has been a chore. It seems as though it’s been something different to combat every day. They are still working on my system and we will see what happens,” Brown said.