ARLINGTON - What a difference a year makes.
Last season, Arlington Seguin was near the top of the state Class 4A girls polls while Stephenville was an also-ran in District 8-4A.
This time around, it's the Honeybees (10-2) who are No. 12 in the state according to the Texas Girls Coaches Association, and they continued to back up that ranking with a 50-48 road defeat of Seguin (5-9) in the District 8-4A opener for both teams.
Led by Brianna Bledsoe's 21 points, Stephenville built a 39-29 advantage in the third quarter before holding off a furious Lady Cougar rally.
A 10-2 run that began when Seguin scored the final four points of the third and concluded with three-point bombs on back-to-back possessions by Sydni Watson early in the fourth made it 41-39.
Hillary Laursen's only basket of the night slowed the rally and put the Bees up by four with 6:17 remaining.
A pair of Watson free throws later made 44-41 with 3:19 left, but the Bees' Kyndra Schouten answered with a lay-in ahead of the Seguin press.
Watson, who scored 11 of her 13 points in the fourth, made it 46-45, but Schouten answered the call again with a pair of free throws for a three-point Stephenville edge.
Watson hit a free throw to make it a two-point game before Bledsoe finished the Bees' scoring with a pair of charity shots in the final minute.
Stephenville had to survive some nervous moments in the closing seconds as Watson cut the Seguin deficit to two again and Stephenville threw the ensuing inbounds pass away with six seconds left.
But the Honeybees didn't allow the Lady Cougars to get a good look at the basket and a wild shot went astray as time expired.
Bledsoe was joined in double figures by Kelsey Evans with 11. She had nine in the third period. Alex Huckabee scored nine on a trio of first half three-point shots before battling foul trouble after the break. Schouten scored four, all in the fourth, while Lazarine had three and Laursen added two.
Watson led Seguin, followed by Takiyah Langford with 12 and Veronica Azubuike with 11.
Stephenville, winner of four straight, returns home to Gandy Gym for a date with Crowley when 8-4A play continues on Friday.