CORSICANA — John Tyler's attempt at short-hand played right into Corsicana's hand.
Corsicana handed the two-time defending district champions a stunning 60-46 defeat as JT played without four three-year starters Friday night.
Dzifa Mallett made JT pay time after time, going for a game-high 22 points and filling out his stat sheet with seven rebounds, four steals and two blocks for Corsicana.
Only one player finished in double digits as the Lions struggled on the offensive end without the services of four players who have started for district champions every year in high school. JT's leading scorer Tyus Bowser missed the game, along with fellow all-district performers Darion Flowers, Fred Ross and Greg Ward, due to football recruiting visits.
The loss marked only the third in the last 31 district games for the Lions.
"It was huge," JT coach Cedeno Clark said regarding the key absences. "That's 50-plus points missing."
Less than full strength, JT mirrored the team starting the year 3-11 with seven varsity members still with the football team. Corsicana caught fire in the meantime to resemble a squad which won 18 of its first 22 games.
The Lions dropped to 8-13 overall and 2-1 in District 16-4A. The loss marked just the third in 31 district games for JT.
Corsicana (19-6, 1-2) chalked up its first district win after losing to Whitehouse and No. 12 Jacksonville.
"I knew we'd be shorthanded, but still the kids have to be ready," Clark continued. "Corsicana was up for it."
Six different players produced points in the first period as JT claimed a 14-11 lead.
Everything changed in the second. Corsicana closed the first half on a commanding 17-0 run to take a 28-16 lead into the locker rooms.
The Lions went scoreless the last 7:40 of the second period while watching a five-point lead turn into a double-digit deficit.
Corsicana canned six treys on the night, three in a 92-second span to close a 13-0 run early in the fourth and end any comeback hopes for JT.
Keaunte Humber hit a team-high 10 points for JT. Isaac Warren added nine points, six steals and four assists for the Lions.
JT converted 17 of its 18 field goals inside the paint while struggling from deep, finishing 0-for-19 from 3-point territory.
"It's a tough loss.”We had a horrible second quarter and we missed too many point-blank layups," said Clark, whose team battles Jacksonville in a showdown Tuesday. "It's a tough loss."
LIONS TALES: John Tyler plays Jacksonville Tuesday at Jacksonville High School in a boys-only matchup (the girls meet Monday at the same venue). Jacksonville's gymnasium seats 650. Once capacity is reached, no one will be permitted to enter the area, Clark said.
Corsicana 60, John Tyler 46
John Tyler 14 2 10 20 - 46
Corsicana 11 17 17 15 - 60
JOHN TYLER - Jordan Caldwell, 7; Isaac Warren , 9; Rodney Bendy, 8; Elliott Hart, 5; Keaunte Humber, 10; JaVonte Tramble, 4; William Vaughn, 1; Vernon Thomas, 2. FG 18-60 FT 10-14.
CORSICANA - Dzifa Mallett, 22; Daniar Martin, 3; Mike Lewis, 9; Ernest McGee, 7; Jamaal Evans, 4; Tim Lang, 6; Ralph Watts, 7; Lathan Carter, 2. FG 24-52 FT 6-11.
Three-point goals - JT: 0-19: C: 6-19. Rebounds - JT: 30 (Bendy 5); C: 39 (Lewis 8). Assists - JT: 8 (Warren 4); C: 12 (Evans 3). Turnovers - JT: 30; C: 33. Total fouls - JT: 14; C: 12.
RECORDS - John Tyler 8-13 (2-1); Corsicana 19-6 (1-2).
NEXT UP - John Tyler at Jacksonville, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.
John Tyler 56, Corsicana 53 (OT)
John Tyler 5 17 7 16 11 - 56
Corsicana 14 13 11 7 8 - 53
JOHN TYLER - Cain, 1; Wilson, 13; Teal, 4; Love, 1; Owens-Bush, 15; McColliser, 11; Jasper, 8; Flourney, 3.
CORSICANA - Terry, 8; Nelson, 4; Wright, 6; Seth, 8; Fowler, 9; Stone, 2; Grant, 16.
THREE-POINT GOALS - C: Fowler (3), Wright (2), Seth.
RECORDS - John Tyler (3-0).
John Tyler 54, Corsicana 40
John Tyler 13 10 15 16 - 54
Corsicana 4 16 13 7 - 40
JOHN TYLER - Henderson, 6; Gross, 4; Smith, 10; Johnson, 6; Devers, 19; Williams, 9.
CORSICANA - Tovas, 6; Brown, 2; Owens, 7; Beechum, 7; McKessack, 18.
THREE-POINT GOALS - Devers, Henderson, Williams; C: Beechum, Owens.
RECORDS - John Tyler 6-9 (3-0).