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NEW WAVERLY — After a slow start, the No. 13 New Waverly Bulldogs got back to the dominant brand of basketball they’ve showcased all season.

New Waverly led by seven points at halftime before blowing past Anderson-Shiro down the stretch in a 65-40 home win on Friday night.

The victory marked the 13th straight for the Bulldogs, who haven’t lost since dropping their season opener at Alpha Omega, ranked No. 2 in TAPPS 3A.

“Heart,” senior guard Cameron Austin replied when asked what’s been different about this year’s team. “Everybody is ready and everybody wants to play. We've wanted this so bad. For 4-5 of us, it's our last ride. With COVID and everything, we don't know when it'll be our last game, so we just come out and keep playing.”

“They're holding each other accountable,” added head coach Melvin Williams. “Sometimes I don't even have to say it before they get to it. They're just holding each other accountable and working hard.”

New Waverly (13-1, 2-0), which beat Hardin by 43 points in Tuesday’s District 12-3A opener, led just 29-22 at halftime on Friday. The Bulldogs picked up the pace in the second half, however, stretching the lead to double-digits in the opening minute of the third quarter and out-scoring the Owls 36-18 the rest of the way.

Junior guard Sebastine Amaro poured in a game-high 24 points for the Bulldogs, with sophomore forward Joe Bryant adding 14 points, four rebounds and two blocks.

“It was just our tempo,” Amaro said. “Our coach always talks about energy. We didn't have it at first, so he told everybody at halftime to pick up the tempo.”

Next up for the Bulldogs is a top-15 showdown with No. 7 Coldspring, which entered Friday night undefeated. The game will be played Tuesday night at Coldspring High School, with the varsity game scheduled to tip off around 6:30 p.m.

“We're super excited,” Austin said. “I can't wait.”

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