After eight days between games, the Life Waxahachie Mustangs used scoring contributions from nine players to soundly hand visiting Stephenville a district loss Wednesday.
The Mustangs turned up the defense in the second half in their home gym to outscore the Yellowjackets 37-11 after the break in the 71-36 win.
Eddie Berumen, head boys' basketball coach at Life Waxahachie, said he was proud of the way his team responded after Stephenville closed the first-half lead to nine points.
"I thought we played a lot better in spurts. We played a lot better in the second half defensively than we did in the second quarter," Berumen said. "I was proud of them for responding.
"[...] "I think it was a total team effort. Everybody was pretty unselfish and we try to teach the kids all of the time that you are going to score more points if you play unselfishly. Just remembering to make the extra pass and doing the little things right, and I think tonight we did that. It was just a good team effort, and defensively especially."
The Mustangs were led by 6-foot-6 guard Justin Nimmer's game-high 23 points.
Robin White scored 13 points, Joshua Sanders added 10 and Brayden Jones finished with eight.
Mason Mathers chipped in six points, Blake Bluitt had two, and Colton Wilhoite, Blaine Stacy and Rodney Sneed each scored three points.
Berumen said he hopes the Mustangs realized their ability to deal with adversity and can carry that mindset toward the postseason.
"It was our bye on Friday, we took off on Saturday, which we never take off but the kids were tired from the first round of district and the tournaments. Then Monday was a holiday and Tuesday was a snow day, so we hadn't practiced in a while. I think it was good for the kids even though we started a little slow and got tired a little bit," Berumen explained. "But I think if the kids can learn that we can deal with that kind of adversity then we will be fine."
The win moved the Mustangs, who entered the week at No. 14 in the TABC 4A poll, to 25-6 on the season and 4-1 in District 8-4A. Life Waxahachie sits one game ahead of third-place Stephenville and one back of No. 11 Midlothian Heritage.
Life Waxahachie returns to action Friday on the road against Glen Rose. Tipoff is at 7:30 p.m. in Tiger Arena.