GRANBURY — After pushing Granbury for three quarters, but ultimately falling, 60-40, to the Pirates on Thursday, Cleburne fell flat in a 65-38 loss to 3-7 South Houston on Friday as the Mike Brown Auto Group tournament continued.

The Yellow Jackets struggled on both sides of the court and managed just 12 points on offense while the Trojans put up 31 after 20 in the opening period.

Cleburne (1-8) doubled its offensive output with 12 points in the third quarter, but the Jacket defense couldn’t stop South Houston as the Trojans put up 34 points in the second half.

Cleburne head coach Greg Kudrna said the less-than-stellar performance represents another bump in the road for the young Jackets this season.

“We took two big steps forward yesterday,” Kudrna said of Cleburne’s effort against Granbury. “But we took one giant, giant step back today.

“We lost our composure and we weren’t very competitive.”

Frustrations boiled over in the first half as the Jackets were frustrated by the Trojans’ aggressive defense, and Cleburne got into foul trouble in the early going.

A technical foul on senior point guard Cody Murphy capped off the Jackets’ frustrations as South Houston extended its advantage to 44-16 in the third quarter.

“We showed our inexperience in every aspect of the game,” Kudrna said. “We just played awful. The players got frustrated and they don’t understand yet that you have to work hard to handle that kind of pressure.”

Kudrna likened the Trojans’ athleticism to what the Jackets will face in District 16-4A competition.

“We may see teams like that in district,” Kudrna said. “That wasn’t a really good, tough team, but we made them look like state champions.”

There’s nowhere for Cleburne to go but up, Kudrna said.

“We’ve got a long way to go, but I knew that starting the season,” Kudrna said. “I was hoping we had made enough progress as of yesterday so we could keep building on it, but we didn’t build on it today. We need to keep working.”

Michael Whitehead lead the Jackets with nine points, and L.J. Holmes had seven.

Chaston Cuffee put in six, and Brodrick Martin had five.

Cleburne took on Paschal at 11 a.m. Saturday to close out tournament play, but results were not available at presstime.

Visit www.cleburnetimesreview.com for the latest scores and updates from around Johnson County.

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