By TONY EIERDAM
Paced by a 23-4 run in the third quarter, the Mineral Wells Rams raised their overall record above the .500 mark after defeating Krum, 76-66, Tuesday night at the MWHS gym.
The win raises the Rams’ mark to 5-4. The Rams will play next at 6 p.m. Friday at Brownwood.
The final score was misleading. The Rams, paced by 28 third-quarter points, took a commanding 57-33 lead into the fourth quarter before MWHS head coach Aaron Pappas emptied his bench.
Krum, which had scored just 33 points in the first three quarters, put up 33 points in the fourth quarter to make the contest appear closer than it really was.
“We played great coming out of the half and early in the game,” Rams head coach Aaron Pappas said. “But when we got that big lead I played my guys who don’t get a chance to play much ... I didn’t want to take them out because I felt the lead was safe enough.
“But we squandered a big lead due to fouling and lack of rebounding. We didn’t show much discipline and we committed too many turnovers.”
The Rams frustrated Krum early with a pressure defense that created turnovers which led to outstanding scoring opportunities. MWHS led 29-19 at the half, but would break the game open in the third quarter.
MWHS senior guard DaShawn Hicks, who did not score in the first half, turned it on in the third. He hit a three-pointer early in the third, and then demoralized Krum after picking the pocket of a KHS guard and driving in for a layup.
Hicks followed with another driving layup, and his put back late in the period increased the MWHS advantage to 52-23.
Rams guard Nick Wendt, who led MWHS with 18 points, closed the third-quarter scoring with a pair of free trows as the Rams took a 24-point lead into the fourth period.