Stephenville head boys basketball coach Mike Dacus would love to see his team repeat as champions of the Cross Timbers Classic - that much is a given.

But Dacus says he has much more to worry about than tournament titles - he is trying to prepare his club for the upcoming District 8-4A season, and that means improving every time the Yellow Jackets take the court.

Because a handful of varsity basketball players were also part of the Stephenville football team that reached the area round of the playoffs, the Jackets had a late start to the hoops season.

“We had three workouts all together before Thanksgiving, we took a couple days off for the holiday and we’ve only had a couple practices since then,” says Dacus, whose club picked up its first win at Abilene Wylie on Tuesday. “We’re just trying to continue to improve. I plan to play some kids a lot of minutes these next three games just to see them in action together and to build chemistry, which we don’t have right now.”

Dacus says playing three games over the weekend - the Jackets battle Hutto at 2:30 p.m. and Royce City at 7 p.m. today and Temple at noon Saturday, all in Gandy Gym - gives his club a chance to see plenty of game-time situations.

The veteran coach says he doesn’t know a lot about Hutto, Royce City or Temple, but that’s fine. He’s mostly concerned with the continuing development of his team.

“We have a lot to learn about each other still,” he said. “We’ll learn some more this weekend and go from there.”