WAXAHACHIE — For eight minutes — despite a bad case of erratic shooting — the Lady Indians seemed primed to stage their second straight upset of the season.
The turnover bug, however, had other plans.
Waxahachie fell 75-37 to Mansfield Timberview High School on Tuesday at George W. Solis Gymnasium after committing 25 turnovers in
32 minutes of girls' basketball.
"We have to cut down on mistakes but we're in the toughest district in the state," said Lesli Priebe, the head girls' basketball coach at Waxahachie High School. "The lessons we learned during our two games against Mansfield Timberview and the win against [Mansfield] Summit will help us as we navigate through playoffs. "
Aside from concluding their district schedule undefeated and finished the regular season on an 11-game win streak, the (27-2,4-0) Lady Wolves' were the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches No. 2 girls' 5A team and never fell below third in the poll during the season.
Waxahachie knocked former No. 3 Mansfield Summit High School out of the TABC top 10 after beating the Lady Jaguars on Jan. 31.
They also didn't have three-year starting point guard and human-crossover-waiting-to-happen Diamond Atchison to contend with because of a concussion suffered during the Jan. 31 matchup with Midlothian High School.
"It's a huge difference when you don't have your starting point guard against the No. 1 team in the district," Priebe said. "Jordan (McGee) and Rayna (Ross) gave it their best shot but they don't have as much big-game experience as Diamond does. They got valuable ball-handling experience tonight — two games of it. If we can get Diamond back for the playoff game, it will give us three experienced facilitators to run the offense through."
Perhaps more important was that the Lady Wolves' capitalized on Waxahachie mistakes and scored 26 fast-break points on 13 of their 19 total steals. Twelve of those steals came in during the second and third quarter when the lead grew from nine to 20 to 33 points.
Though Mansfield Timberview exploded for 36 first-half points, it wasn't resident Texas A&M University commit Chennedy Carter that rallied the troops. Senior Trelynn Tyler, the game's scoring leader, scored 12 of her 17 points and junior Lauryn Thompson scored nine of her 11 points in the first 16 minutes.
Carter, who scored a second-leading 16 points, did the bulk of her damage during the third quarter. By the time the opening whistle of the fourth quarter sounded, Mansfield Timberview held a commanding 62-29 lead.
The Lady Wolves outscored Waxahachie in three straight quarters and despite losing the battle of the offensive and defensive glass. In four quarters, the Lady Indians outrebounded their higher-ranked foes 30 to 23.
Priebe said her team's performance in the first quarter, as well as the commitment to rebounding, was encouraging given their matchup with undefeated District 9-5A Crowley High School in the Bi-District round of the UIL 5A playoffs.
"They're undefeated in their district just like Mansfield Timberview," she said. "They've got two athletic shooters and a good post, too. It will be tough. We did a good job of breaking the press and I know that's something that Crowley's going to do early and often."
At times, the Waxahachie press break was so good they weaved the ball through Mansfield Timberview's defense without a single dribble and in less than 10 seconds.
Sophomore post Destiny Bobb was the recipient of two of those passes — one via a no-look dish from junior Sha'Quoria Thompson.
While Bobb notched an 11-point, 10-rebound and two-block double-double, sophomore wing Cassidy Morgan and freshman guard Rayna Ross chipped in nine points and two rebounds and seven points and three rebounds, respectively.
Thompson scored two points on a pair of free throws, pulled down 10 rebounds and blocked one shot.
The nine-point outing was a season high for Morgan, who, at times, seemed to be able to get into the Lady Wolf defensive interior at will.
Waxahachie will face Crowley at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Alvarado Junior High School Gymnasium, located at 1000 North Cummings Drive in Alvarado. The (23-5, 14-0) Lady Eagles, which have won 11 games in a row, are state-ranked at No. 18 by the TABC.
They also haven't lost a game since a 62-51 Dec. 30 decision against Little Elm High School during the Mansfield Rotary Tournament.
Priebe said there are no plans for a Friday warm up game and that she will use the time off to recuperate and heal before the bi-district round matchup.
Marcus S. Marion can be reached for story idea submissions or concerns at (469) 517-1456. Follow him on Twitter at @MarcusMarionWNI.