In November last year, Waelder Wildcats boys basketball coach David Graves promised the community his team would be “the best defensive team in the state in 1A.” On Jan. 10, the defense Graves promised delivered its best performance to date: a dominating 53-38 victory over state-ranked rival Moulton.
“For the whole city, this is what we play for. We play for the city. We don’t play for individuality, we play for each other,” Graves said after the game. “It’s awesome to see everything coming together and the discipline that we’re having, but it starts with defense. They know this, the fans know this, I live and die by that and I think that’s embedded in these guys.”
Waelder took the lead early in the first quarter and never let it go. The Wildcats defense stifled Moulton throughout the game and never allowed them to get into a rhythm offensively.
Moulton did make a run late in the fourth quarter, cutting Waelder’s lead to eight with just over two minutes to go, but the Wildcats quickly regained control of the game and secured the 15-point win.
Isaiah Miller, junior, led all scorers with 19 points, Jacovan Fields, senior, followed with nine points and Jr. Satterwhite, senior, and Colby Thorne, senior, both totaled eight points.
“For our seniors, this is the last time that they’re ever going to play Moulton on this floor, so for me (the win) means a lot to watch them go out like that,” Graves said. “I love these guys. These guys were talked bad about when I took this job, but they’re not that. These guys are great young men, they work hard.”
Both teams entered Friday night’s game an undefeated 2-0 in District 30-1A play and in the top 25 of the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches (TABC) polls. The win moved the Wildcats to 3-0 in district play and into a tie with Dime Box atop the district standings. As of Jan. 13, TABC has Waelder ranked number 13, up from their number 15 placement the week prior. Moulton dropped one position after the lost from number 17 to 18.