ARLINGTON – Glenn Hartson came into the district opening game with Juan Seguin High School knowing that the district race in 15-4A would be tough, just like last year when his Panthers were Tri-champions along with Lancaster and Waxahachie.

As proof positive of Hartson’s tough district theory, the Panthers had to battle from a first quarter deficit for the 61-58 win.

The Panthers got 35 points from inside as Brett Land (21) led all scorers and Caleb Russell (14) proved effective as well.

Riley Plante (12) and Derek Bryant (10) were effective enough on the outside to loosen play in the paint.

Seguin came out hot in the opening period with 18 points to just 11 for the Panthers.

“We missed some easy shots in the paint early in the game,” Hartson said. “If we had made those it would have been a much different ball game.”

Even though shots were not falling, the Blue Crew managed to cut the lead to 29-25 at the intermission.

A 20 point third quarter gave Midlothian a 45-44 advantage going into the fourth quarter.

“We went to a 2-3 zone to start the third period,” Hartson explained. “But, we had four players in double figures and that is what we need to be successful.”

Jeremy Charles played very well with 10 assists while having only 4 turnovers.

“Jeremy has been playing very well the last 3-4 games,” Hartson said of his young point guard.

Riley Plante was 10-for-10 from the charity line as the Panthers hit 20 of 25 free throws.

“Caleb Russell (9) and Brett Land (10) did a good job on the boards with 19 rebounds between them,” Hartson stated.

“It was good to come away with a road win for the first district game. We must win some on the road and win them all at home to be successful in this district,” he said.

Midlothian  11  14  20  16  -  61

Arl. Seguin 18  10  16  14  -  58

Midlothian: Brett land 21, Caleb Russell 14, Riley Plante 12, Derek Bryant 10, Chris Windsor 2, Jeremy Charles 2.

ASGN: Jeremiah Ford 15, Bryant Huynh 13, Ciante Evans 8, Tuan Vu 7, DeAndrew Brown 6, David Butler 4, Jordan Suber 3, Michael Martin 2.

Midlothian 66, Ennis 41

On Friday night, the Panthers hosted Ennis to record its second district win.

MHS (9-6, 2-0) jumped out to a 17-12 lead after the first quarter, but Ennis fought back to tie the score at 33-all going into the second half.

Midlothian’s defense shut down the Ennis offense in the entire second half, allowing three points in the third quarter and just five more in the fourth.

Caleb Russell (21) and Brett Land (18) paced the team in scoring as both post players put up double/doubles.

Riley Plante (11) scored in double figures as well.

Also scoring were Sam Espinoza (8), Derek Bryant (4), James Nelson (2) and Alex Drusch (2).

The Panthers will play Killeen in the Coca-Cola Tournament at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday.

E-mail Jim at jim.perry@wninews.com