DESOTO — The Jaguars and Mustangs must have been looking for the perfect place to stage their Game of the Week bid.
Look no further than DeSoto and DHS Eagle Gymnasium.
Though the first two renditions of the Midlothian Heritage-Life Waxahachie battles were thrilling, neither matched Friday's 62-60 double overtime finish that left Midlothian Heritage High School the winner and owner of the District 8-4A No. 1 seed.
The game pitted the Head Coach Andy Slye and the (27-5, 12-1) Jaguars, Texas Association of Basketball Coaches No. 16 boys 4A team, against Head Coach Eddie Berumen and the (26-8, 11-2) Mustangs, which are one spot lower on the rankings at No. 17.
Midlothian Heritage won the first meeting 62-58 on Jan. 3 and Life Waxahachie won the second 67-66 on Jan. 27.
The school's had identical records entering the game despite one boasting the athletic prowess of guards and forwards like Justin Nimmer, Joshua Sanders and Robin White and the other producing via deadly sharpshooters like Jackson McLaughlin and power pieces like Michael Holland and Steven Wallace.
In a matchup of arguably the state's two best 4A teams, however, only one can win.
Behind boxer-like blows and point scoring from the game's leading scorers — Wallace (20 pts) and Nimmer (19 pts) — the game seesawed back and forth between a 32-18 first half Jaguar lead to an 18-10 fourth quarter Mustang run that forced the first of two overtimes.
Wallace, McLaughlin (13 pts) Jaren Shead (6 pts) and Colin Valenta (2 pts) combined for 17 of Midlothian Heritage's 19 points in the second quarter, but Life Waxahachie's Nimmer, Sanders, White and Daniel Nguyen were nearly unstoppable during a pair of 18-point quarters to end regulation.
And while big shots from Wallace and Sanders helped extend the game into extra time, it wasn't a big defensive play a breakaway dunk or a buzzer-beating jumper that decided — for now — which was the better team in Texas.
It was a pair of icy-clutch free throws from Holland.
The bi-district round's pairings, however, ensured neither Midlothian Heritage or Life Waxahachie High School aren't that far away from each other.
The Mustangs will face Castleberry High School at 6 p.m. Tuesday and the Jaguars will face Lake Worth at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Both games are at Mansfield Legacy High School.
Castleberry (18-15, 7-5) is the District 7-4A No. 3 seed and Lake Worth (14-18, 7-5) is the district's No. 4 seed.
Marcus S. Marion can be reached for story idea submissions or concerns at (469) 517-1456. Follow him on Twitter at @MarcusMarionWNI.