DUNCANVILLE — The Class 6A state-ranked Waxahachie boys basketball team hit its first rough patch of the 2019-2020 season, but ended its Thanksgiving weekend with a big win against an out-of-state power.
On Saturday, following some holiday rest, the Runnin’ Indians bounced back strongly as they gobbled up a 74-65 win against six-time Arkansas state champion West Memphis and Auburn pledge Chris Moore in the Thanksgiving Hoop Fest at Duncanville High School.
The Blue Devils outrebounded the Tribe, 34-26, but WHS (6-2) shot 51 percent from the floor and 40 percent from behind the 3-point arc.
Jalen Lake made a pair of 3-pointers and BJ Francis hit a couple of fast-break buckets, including a pull-up trey, in the first quarter to put the Runnin’ Indians ahead to stay.
The victory helped the Indians move on from what for them was a disappointing 2-2 showing in the Dallas Mavericks Fall Classic at Frisco Independence High School.
The Indians dropped a 74-57 decision to Dallas Carter in the second round of the tournament last Tuesday. Carter, ranked No. 6 in Class 4A by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches, jumped out to a 25-11 first-quarter lead and left the Indians trying to play catch-up the rest of the way. WHS fought to stay within 34-22 at halftime, but the Cowboys turned on the jets and pulled away in the third period.
CJ Noland led the Indians with 17 points and nine rebounds, followed by Francis with 16 points and eight boards and KB Jackson with a dozen tallies off the bench.
Jalen Williams led Carter with 25 points and 11 rebounds. The Cowboys scored 27 of their points off turnovers.
The Tribe dropped into the consolation bracket and grabbed a 65-56 victory against Denton Braswell later on Tuesday, scoring 28 points in the first eight minutes and coasting the rest of the way. Noland had a monster game with 23 points, 15 rebounds and three steals, while Francis added 16 points and Lake 13.
But on Wednesday, WHS seemingly hit a wall as they wrapped up the tourney with a 74-57 loss to Plano John Paul II, which is No. 2 in the TABC 6A private school poll.
The Indians, who dropped six spots to No. 12 in the latest Texas Association of Basketball Coaches Class 6A poll after the two losses, will stay on the road the next two weekends, playing in the Mansfield Spring Creek tournament from Thursday through Saturday and the Cypress Fairbanks tournament on Dec. 12-14. They’ll open the Mansfield tournament against Celina at noon on Thursday and will face Dallas Lakehill Prep on Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Their next game at Mike Turner Gymnasium will be on Friday, Dec. 20 at 4 p.m. against Lewisville.