Jacoby Decker scored 28 points to lead the Bossier Bearkats to a 57-50 victory over the Natchitoches Central Chiefs in the semifinals of the Bossier Invitational Friday night at Bossier.
The Bearkats (13-6), No. 4 in the Class 4A power rankings, face Monroe Richwood (11-11) for the title at 7:30 Saturday night. The Rams edged Huntington 66-64 in the other semifinal.
Huntington (9-9) faces Natchitoches Central (16-2), No. 1 in the 5A power rankings, in the third-place game at 6.
Natchitoches Central started strong, scoring the first six points. But Bossier outscored the Chiefs 16-4 over the remainder of the first quarter to take a 16-10 lead.
Decker hit two 3-pointers late in the quarter, including one with a few seconds left.
Decker, a junior who was a first-team All-Parish selection last season, scored in a variety of ways. He hit soft jumpers in the lane and scored on drives to the basket. He was also able to draw fouls while taking the ball inside.
Bossier maintained the lead throughout the final three quarters. The Bearkats led 28-20 at the half and 40-30 after three quarters.
Bossier led 52-38 with 3 minutes left in the game. Natchitoches Central cut it to five with about 20 seconds left but could get no closer.
Decker scored eight points in both the third and fourth quarters.
Tim King added eight points and Tyron McCoy seven.
Des Vaughn paced Natchitoches Central with 17 points and DJ Carpenter had 13.
In a consolation game, Benton fell to Southwood 69-49. Jalen Harding led the Tigers (11-8) with 28 points. Cameron Robinson added 10.
Richwood rallied from a four-point deficit after three quarters to defeat Huntington. Joseph Smith and Jaewon Williams led the Rams with 16 and 15 points, respectively.
Elsewhere, the Airline Vikings opened District 1-5A play with a 61-48 victory at Byrd.
The Vikings snapped Byrd’s eight-game winning streak. The Yellow Jackets dropped to 12-4 and 1-1.
Airline (12-10, 1-0) led 28-19 at the half and 45-40 going into the fourth quarter.
In other 1-5A games, Parkway fell to Evangel Christian 56-50 at Parkway, and Haughton lost to Captain Shreve 86-49 at Shreve.
In District 1-1A, the Plain Dealing Lions downed Arcadia 57-50 at home.
At Parkway, Ty Hubbard led the Panthers with 16 points. Chase Turner added 12.
Parkway (7-8, 0-2) trailed 32-21 after three quarters. The Panthers scored 29 in the fourth but couldn’t catch the Eagles (8-10, 2-0). Hubbard and Turner scored 10 each in the fourth.
Haughton dropped to 2-10 and 0-2 with the loss to Shreve (8-11, 1-1).
At Arcadia, Dakeldrick Oliver poured in 24 points to lead Plain Dealing to the victory. Derrien Perry added 14.
The Lions improved to 7-11 and 2-1. Arcadia dropped to 3-7 and 0-2.
— Russell Hedges, firstname.lastname@example.org