HOUMA – With 13 points, 10 rebounds and 11 blocked shots, Patrick Gordon recorded a triple-double Tuesday as Vandebilt Catholic High School faced E.D. White Catholic in a defensive clash.
His lone steal, however, proved to be the most memorable play of the night.
With 6 seconds remaining and the Terriers protecting a 40-39 lead, Gordon and DeShaun Patterson met E.D. White’s leading scorer, Clay Badeaux, at midcourt, where Badeaux had received an inbounds pass.
Gordon gained control of the ball, and his dunk with 2 seconds left excited the home crowd as Vandebilt took a 42-39 win in non-district action.
“It was just a battle. Our team did not want to give up, and they were playing a well-coached, disciplined team,” Terriers coach Rafe Blades said. “Who didn’t want to be in this gym? This was a great.”
The Terriers had missed a free throw with 11 seconds left, but they retained possession on a jump ball.
Then, attempting an inbounds pass, they watched EDW guard Ben Martin steal the pass and wisely call a timeout before his foot touched the sideline.
Martin’s play gave the Cardinals, who had to travel the length of the court, one more chance to win the game.
Vandebilt stayed in its man-to-man defense for the final play, intending to challenge E.D. White at midcourt once the inbounds pass was thrown.
“I knew that if we picked them up at halfcourt before (the pass), they’d throw it long,” Blades said.
Gordon and Patterson converged on Badeaux as he caught the ball at the timeline.
Their defensive stop kept the Terriers (3-0) undefeated on the young season and soured a gritty effort from E.D. White (1-4), which tried to force outside shots by collapsing on Vandebilt’s post players for most of the second half.
On the other end of the floor, the Cardinals made pass after pass, waited for high-percentage shots and came up with a bevy of crucial second-chance points.
It nearly worked.
EDW never trailed by more than four points, and the Cardinals had their own four-point lead twice in the fourth quarter.
Despite its low score – E.D. White had just 17 points at halftime, but only trailed by two – the game gave onlookers their money’s worth.
Though the teams contested almost every shot, they combined to attempt a mere 15 free throws, and the Terriers’ first trip to the foul line came with 9 seconds left in the third quarter.
Vandebilt made 4-of-7 foul shots. E.D. White went 5-for-8 from the free-throw line, but missed its final three attempts, giving the Terriers the chance they needed.
Leading 39-38 with 1:41 remaining, the Cardinals ran nearly a minute off the clock by spreading out, passing around the perimeter and dribbling only when necessary.
Badeaux – who scored 13 points, mostly on a series of smart jumpers – stepped to the free-throw line with 45 seconds left. But he missed the front end of a one-and-one, and Patterson pulled in the rebound.
Vandebilt’s Chance Brown, who finished with a game-high 14 points and added eight rebounds, hit two foul shots with 32 seconds left.
But Cazenave also missed his first shot, and Gordon’s 10th rebound gave the Terriers a chance to close out the game.
Patterson had 10 points, four rebounds and four assists for the Terriers.
Badeaux was the only Cardinal to score in double figures. Cazenave, at a considerable height disadvantage against the 6-foot-6 Gordon, had eight points and eight rebounds in the paint for E.D. White.