Three days after suffering their first first-ever district loss under the tutelage of head coach Greg Gober, the Waxahachie Runnin' Indians bounced back for a home win Friday night against Cedar Hill.
Even after the 51-43 victory though, Gober was still not exactly pleased with the overall effort of the Tribe inside Mike Turner Gymnasium.
Waxahachie managed just 21 first-half points and shot 34 percent from the field and 3-of-21 from behind the arc (14 percent).
"I think we played very lethargic and didn't have the energy that we have been known for in the past. We have to find a way to get that energy back," Gober said. "That energy has to come from the made baskets and the positive plays, so the more positive plays we make, the more energy we will have."
CJ Noland led the way for the Runnin' Indians with 16 points on 7-of-12 shooting (58 percent). He also added nine rebounds and two steals.
JT Warren accounted for 10 points and six boards, while KB Jackson scored eight points, BJ Francis had seven, Mekai Pope added six, Da'maraie Watkins finished with three and AB Shorter had two.
Watkins led the team with four assists and Francis chipped in three. The Runnin' Indians turned the ball over 12 times.
Waxahachie had not previously dropped a district contest in the first two years of Gober's tenure. That changed Tuesday in their District 7-6A opener on the road against DeSoto.
After the 67-54 loss, Gober spoke very candidly, explaining "we got our rear-end handed to us."
"It was a difficult deal to stomach, but if you don't have the effort and energy, then that is what you get," Gober continued. "If you are not going to be strong enough to block anybody off of the boards then you are going to get outperformed by a higher-level athletic team. We did not do some fundamental things that we needed to do to stay in the game."
Noland scored a team-high 18 points and Warren added 12. Watkins (9), Pope (7), Jackson (5), and Francis (3) rounded out the scoring for the Runnin' Indians on a night when they shot 39 percent (20-51) from the field.
The Runnin' Indians will now take their mandatory five days off before returning to the court Dec. 27 in the 61st annual Whataburger Basketball Tournament at W.G. Thomas Coliseum in Haltom City.
For a full preview of the tournament, which the Runnin' Indians finished as the runners-up in last season after falling to state-ranked Mansfield Timberview in the championship, pick up a copy of Wednesday's Daily Light.
Fred Phipps/Daily Light contributed to this report.