01/23/24

The Cooldown: Week 19

Cover Photo via the Dallas Morning News/ Chitose Suzuki 

There is less than a month until the playoffs tipoff across Texas, which places particular importance on the next few weeks of games. Week by week, district championships and seeding will be decided across the metroplex. Some districts will decide playoff seeding before others, but there is a ton of good hoops ahead regardless. One matchup last week that impacted a district race was the nationally ranked DeSoto girls matchup with the nationally ranked Duncanville girls. Let’s recap last weeks action.

DeSoto downs Duncanville

DeSoto pulled off what could technically be considered an upset, considering DeSoto was ranked No. 21 in the nation and Duncanville was ranked No. 11. The Lady Eagles beat Duncanville 53-48 to seize control of District 11-6A and reconfigure both the state and national rankings. Duncanville took round one between these two teams, so there could be a tie for the top playoff spot between these two teams. Some tiebreakers are decided with a tiebreaker, but I would love to see these schools face off a third time to decide which team gets the top seed in District 11-6A.

Kamora Pruitt led the way for DeSoto with 15 points, Amari Byles chipped in 12 points and Amayah Garcia added 11 points. Nissa Muhammad scored seven points, including three points at the free throw line in the final minute. Mariah Clayton led the way for Duncanville with 12 points while Chloe Mann added nine points. Kaylinn Kemp scored eight points and Samari Holeman chipped in seven points. The Pantherettes were outscored 12-6 in the final frame after leading DeSoto by seven points at halftime.

Keller defeats Keller Central

Keller remained undefeated in District 4-6A with a 73-56 win over Keller Central last Friday. The Indians are led by Brooks Bahr and Steven Ramirez, and those two powered Keller to another district win. Ramirez led the scoring with 21 points and 14 rebounds, also chipping in two assists, blocks and steals. Bahr nearly had a double-double of his own with 14 points and eight assists. The BYU commit also added seven rebounds, four blocks and two steals. Jordan Blair led Keller Central with 23 points and Sean Mays added 14 points. Titus Prather scored seven points in the Chargers’ loss.

Keller should win its district behind the dynamic duo of Bahr and Ramirez, and could make a deep playoff run. The Indians have picked up the pace of play since coach Zach Weir came over to lead the program from South Grand Prairie. Cooper Guerra, Quinn Estep, Alex Peterson and Rhett Schank also regularly chip in to Keller’s success, but a deep run in the 6A playoffs will depend on how steady Bahr and Ramirez can be. So far, those two appear up to the challenge.

Waxahachie takes down Mansfield Lake Ridge

On the boys side of District 11-6A, Waxahachie is the last remaining undefeated team in district play. The Indians made sure of that in a 74-68 win over Mansfield Lake Ridge last Wednesday night. Despite digging a 23-7 hole after the first quarter, Waxahachie scored 49 points in the second half to rally for the win.

Parker Jefferson led the way for Waxahachie with 22 points while Jeremiah Rucker chipped in 15 points. King Grace added 13 points and Isayah Pankey scored 12 points. Trae Nunn finished with nine points, nearly giving the Indians five players in double-figures. Amir McMillan scored a game high 25 points for Mansfield Lake Ridge, and got plenty of help from Ahmare Rose, who finished with 15 points. Eze Nwakamma scored eight points for Lake Ridge in the loss.

There is still plenty of basketball left to play, but a district championship could be in the cards for Waxahachie. The Indians have a strong basketball program, but winning a district title over Duncanville and Mansfield Lake Ridge would be impressive.

Players of the Week

My Players of the Week are Southlake Carroll’s Jordan sisters! Gianna Jordan finished with 20 points in a win over Keller Timber Creek last week. Natalia scored 19 points in that win, Nadia added 12 points and Milania scored six points. The four sisters were the Dragons’ top four scorers in the 67-40 win over Falcons. Gianna and Natalia alone nearly outscored Keller Timber Creek. Check out our feature on this talented family below!

Cover Photo of Southlake Carroll's Gianna Jordan courtesy of the Dallas Morning News and Staff Photographer Chitose Suzuki.