Tigers turn Page to region berth
The Marshall County Tigers went coast-to-coast in a not so pretty 62-48 win over Page in the first round of the District 12-AA Tournament Wednesday night at Dottie Kelso Memorial Gymnasium in Lewisburg, clinching a berth in the upcoming Region 6-AA, but first a date with archival Giles County looms in a Friday night district tournament semifinal at East Hickman.
The Tigers have lost both meetings this year to the second-seeded Bobcats, and if they turn the ball over 31 times like they did versus the Patriots, it will be a road trip west for the Tigers next week.
"We are fortunate," said Marshall County head coach Jason Tigert. "You can't get away with those kind of mistakes with the quality opponents we are about to see."
The Tigers started quick, going up 5-0 on a deuce and a trey from Kevin Peterson before a three-pointer by Tyler Schiavo at the 3:25 mark of the period finally got the Patriots on the board.
MCHS scored five more on a Brock Spencer three-bomb and an Aaron Hobbs basket, and would lead 14-7 after the first eight minutes, thanks to four more Peterson points on a single free throw and another long bomb at the buzzer.
Early in the second quarter, a Peterson steal and feed to Barry Mayes put the Tigers up 20-9, but some sloppy play for the remainder of the first half gave Page a chance to cut into the lead and the Patriots trailed by just three points, 22-19, at the half.
Page scored on the first touch of the second half as Hunter Bennefield drilled a jumper, but Marshall County scored seven straight to lead 29-21.
The Pats came right back and tied the game again after the second of two consecutive treys from Schiavo made it 29-29.
Spencer matched the Page three-bomb, and moments later, Peterson came up with a huge steal and raced in for a layup to make it 34-29.
From there, Aaron Hobbs took over the ballgame, scoring seven consecutive points on a steal and score, a circus layup after a Page missed shot, and Hobbs finished the run with a deep three-ball to make it a 12-point lead for MCHS.
"We have played Page three times this year, and he (Hobbs) has had three big nights against them," said Tigert. "He has enjoyed competing with those guys and has been a huge force off the bench."
Peterson put the finishing touch on the 21-point, pull-away period with a tip-in at the buzzer and the Tigers led comfortably 43-29, entering the final eight minutes of play.
Marshall County cruised home with the same 14-point margin with Peterson leading the Tigers in the scoring column with 15 points, Hobbs finished with 14, Spencer was next with 13, Barry Mayes was also in double digits with 10, Chris Walker and Cameron Bowers had four points apiece, and Kacey Pleas had one marker for the Tigers.
Schiavo led all scorers in the game with 18 points for Page (7-17).
The Tigers (17-8) will take the court at East Hickman versus Giles County (21-5) at 8:30 p.m. Friday.
"We really haven't talked about Giles since the last time we played them," said Tigert. "They are a great rebounding team, an athletic team, a senior-oriented team that has won a lot of games."
Tigert added, "Win and advance and that is what we did tonight."