WALLIS — The Brazos High School boys basketball team found its legs early in a unique season with a mix of lower-classification teams and non-basketball powers in 3A, running out to a 4-1 record with a four-game winning streak.
But 2A Snook wouldn’t allow the Cougars to add another win on Tuesday night in Cougars Gym. Brazos lost 55-42.
“We’re doing a good job,” Brazos head coach Joshua McCown said. “I think we’ve been playing really hard. We took a little bit of a step back tonight in intensity compared to the last four games. In those games, we were up and flying all over the court.
“We had bits and pieces of that in this game. But when we got behind, we started doing things we haven’t done all year.”
The Cougars led much of the back-and-forth contest for the first three quarters but the Blue Jays out scored the home team 19-11 in the final frame to pull away.
The first quarter finished with the score tied at 10. Sophomore Bryson Bennett led the Cougars’ scoring with five points.
Senior Jared Demny sparked an early run for Brazos with the second quarter’s first basket and a pair of assists on fast-break scores finished by senior Dillon Arteaga and freshman Trey Gaston.
Gaston raced to the basket for another two points to put Brazos up 18-12 with three minutes left in the second quarter.
Demny continued to collect assists with a long two-point shot by junior Elijah Johnson to help Brazos lead 22-18 at the break.
Demny opened the second half by drawing a charge on a Snook ball-handler.
Brazos earned its largest lead of the contest with a shot beyond the arc from Gaston with an assist from Bennett. The Cougars led 25-18.
Snook went on an 8-0 run to take a 26-25 lead a little under five minutes left in the third quarter.
Junior Hayden Vykukal recorded back-to-back blocks to help on the defensive end.
A Gaston layup with 12 seconds left in the third quarter put Brazos up 32-31.
The Blue Jays sprinted out to a 49-32 lead in the first four minutes of the fourth quarter.
But the margin was too wide, as Brazos fell to 4-2 overall with a home game against Bay City on Friday.
“I told the team in the locker room ‘we can’t get down from this. We have to learn from this,’” McCown said. “We can’t panic. We have to do what we do. We have to keep working and not do stuff we’re not used to.”
Demny led the Cougars with 16 points followed by Gaston with 15. Bennet added seven. Snook was led by junior Kaleb Carroll with 17 points and junior Dalvon Workman added 12 points.
District 24-3A play begins on Monday, Dec. 21.