Jays Cap Off Fourth Straight Win in Silent Night Game
The basketball team overcame early struggles
to defeat East Feliciana on Friday night (Dec. 22), 43-34.
Any fans who showed up to the Jesuit-East Feliciana game at the end of the first quarter missed out on a show…a pregame show, that is. The Jesuit student section celebrated its traditional Silent Night game, which requires each student to wear a blue Santa cap and stay quiet until the Blue Jays score their 10th point. Tardy fans didn’t miss out on many successful possessions, though, as the scoreboard read 7-2 in Jesuit’s favor after eight minutes; and not one chirp was heard in The Birdcage.
Fortunately, the presence of the student section, parents, and in-town alumni—coupled with a little motivation in the huddle between quarters—gave players reason to execute and students permission to cheer loudly. In the second, Jesuit would go on to double its first quarter score (7 pts.), at least, and subsequently double East Feliciana’s halftime score. A 22-9 scoreline heading into the locker room allowed fans and head coach Chris Jennings ’78 to breathe a bit more easily.
That halftime sigh of relief did not last long as the Feliciana Tigers quickly shortened the deficit to single digits. Heading into the final quarter with Jesuit leading 32-23, fans were on the edge of their seats. A fast-paced and physical fourth quarter brought the Silent Night game to its final minute. With only a three-point lead (37-34) and 52.3 seconds left, another sigh of relief came at a highly intense moment. After a double-technical was called on the Tigers, Jesuit’s Elijah Morgan knocked down two of 4 free throws. The ensuing free throws by fellow juniors Noah Varnado and Robert McMahon put the game out of reach. Jesuit finished off East Feliciana with a 43-34 victory, giving the team four straight wins heading into Christmas.
Standout performances came from the junior duo of Morgan and Varnado. Morgan led the way with 19 points and four impressive steals, while Varnado added 8 points and a team-high five rebounds.
While very entertaining, the Silent Night game was certainly not the highlight game of the week. Jesuit’s 51-50 win over Warren Easton on Thursday, Dec. 21 saw Elijah Morgan make two clutch free throws with three seconds left and senior Will Landrieu make key hustle plays throughout the fourth quarter. In the end, both non-district games this week prove that the Jesuit basketball team knows how to finish the job. Four straight, and may the beat go on.