The Mansfield boys basketball team got off to a good start in its game against Keller Fossil Ridge on Friday night, and in spite of losing 63-45, coach Jason Speakes said the important thing is that the team got the game in before the start of district.
The Tigers opened up district competition against South Grand Prairie on Tuesday after the press deadline (see dfwvarsity.com for results) and will take on crosstown rival Timberview at 7:30 p.m. on Friday at Timberview High School.
“They have a tremendous back court with Alex Robinson and Tyus Momoh,” Speakes said. “We've got to do a great job of trying to slow those guys down. If we let them have their way, it's going to be a difficult night. Timberview is always physical. They play tremendous defense. They try to take you out of what you are doing on offense. We're going to have to play our game and not them dictate how we are going to play.”
Speakes said he was happy with the start his team got off to against Fossil Ridge on Friday, but said there were some issues as the game progressed.
“We jumped out on them 13-3 in the first quarter, and we felt that were going in the right direction,” Speakes said. “Then we just went ice cold from the field and had a real difficult time scoring. At the same time, Fossil Ridge kind of woke up, and they've got a really good team.
“They got things going in their direction. We really could not get anything going on either end in the second half and it just kind of got away from us.”
Speakes said, while the loss was disappointing, getting the game in after the layoff due to inclement weather was very important for his team.
“That's why we scheduled it,” Speakes said. “Losing our tournament was very costly. We were looking forward to playing three or four games that weekend, and playing some quality competition. We missed that, so we scheduled that for that purpose. We wanted to play a team of the caliber of Fossil Ridge to prep our guys for the type of size, speed and athleticism that we are going to see next week.”
Mansfield was 4-5 heading into Tuesday night's district opener against South Grand Prairie, and Speakes said that he is feeling pretty good about how his team is playing heading in.
“One thing I am excited about is getting back home,” Speakes said prior to the SGP game. “If you look at the numbers, we've shot it well at home. We're still trying to figure out rotation wise, who is going to be making contributions for us and what we're trying to do with the ball. I do think we have learned from the first nine games and benefit from the games we've played.”
Momoh socored 22 points in the game, while Robinson added 15 points for Timberview.
Emmanuel Collins, Matt Martin, Sean Coleman, Connor Moehring, and Quinn Sutton combined for 19 points in the game.