The Stephenville Honeybees returned to form Friday night with a 48-43 girls basketball road victory over Venus, clinching at least the fourth-place playoff spot in District 8-4A.
Payton Wall paced the Honeybees on offense with 19 points. Teammates Jayci Morton and Jordan Carter added 10 each.
The win improved the Honeybees to 6-3 in district and 15-12 overall, with only three regular-season games remaining. SHS could end up tied with Venus, but the Honeybees would have the tie-breaker for a postseason berth because they beat the Lady Bulldogs in both of their head-to-head district matchups.
The Honeybees are scheduled to play at home tonight against Midlothian Heritage. Their next contest is set for Friday, at Alvarado (6 p.m.).
The girls final game of the regular season will be Tuesday, Feb. 6, in a crucial contest at home against Godley, which is 5-5 in district and could end up with a 7-5 record.
After a 39-19 loss to second-ranked Glen Rose on Jan. 23 in which the offense was not firing on all cylinders, SHS head coach Alan Thorpe had said his players tend to have a short memory — meaning that they usually bounce back from such losses with little or no carryover.
That seemed to be the case in the win over Venus, which has a 4-6 district mark.
Stephenville outscored the Lady Bulldogs 11-7 in the opening quarter, but the margin closed to 20-18 by halftime.
Venus had a surge in the third quarter, outscoring the Bees 18-12, but SHS rallied in the final stanza, 16-8, to clinch the win.