Rosepine holds off late Amite rally to win first state title

By Warren Arceneaux

Rosepine wobbled in the fourth quarter but held on for a 69-61 win over Amite in the Non-Select Division III state championship game to win the first state title in program history.

The Eagles (27-7) staved off a late Amite (29-5) rally that saw the Warriors cut a 14-point fourth quarter deficit to just two points on a 3-pointer by Kayla Toefield with 1:42 left.

Addison Fruge answered with baskets on the next three Rosepine possessions to give the Eagles breathing room.

Fruge was named the game’s Most Outstanding Player after finishing with 25 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 steals.

Kelly Norris added 17 points and 8 rebounds for the Eagles. Nevaeh Rivera scored 15 points and had 9 rebounds.

Rosepine head coach Charles Kiely said he and the Eagles learned from last year’s playoff loss, in which they squandered a 21-point second half lead to Rayville.

“Last year we panicked,” he said. “This team we started to panic, but I wasn’t bull-headed about it. I called a timeout and we got settled down. It got chaotic towards the end, but that’s who we are. We are chaos. It was ugly, but today ugly basketball won.”

Kiely said the top-seeded Eagles were prepared for the big stage by a difficult nondistrict schedule.

“Even going back to the summer team points, I don’t want to play teams that won’t make us better,” he said. “We lost games to teams that made it here. We lost to Lafayette, Lafayette Christian and Barbe, but our girls kept showing up and working. We beat some good teams too. Sometimes the girls got frustrated by the teams we asked them to play, but they kept showing up and I think it paid off today.”

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