Frisco Centennial took the pole position in District 9-4A with a 49-46 win over Carrollton Newman Smith on Tuesday.
Missed free throws by Centennial (13-8, 4-0 in 9-4A) gave Newman Smith (11-9, 3-1) a chance to tie the game in the waning seconds, but a half-court prayer rimmed out to preserve a victory that broke a first-place tie in 9-4A.
Centennial hopes to capitalize on its early lead after finishing two games behind 9-4A champion Frisco Wakeland in 2011, but it's likely to be a back-and-forth season in the district.
Resurgent Carrollton Creekview is tied with Newman Smith for second at 3-1, while Frisco and Wakeland are tied for fourth at 2-2. District 9-4A features five teams with overall winning records in addition to Wakeland, which is just a game below .500.
Aside from a blowout win over Frisco Liberty, all of Centennial's victories have been close. Centennial defeated Newman Smith by three, Frisco by four and Wakeland by six.