Tigers blow out Bobcats
After having their six-game winning streak snapped by Christ Presbyterian Academy three days earlier, the Marshall County Tigers began a new one on Friday when they thrashed archrival Giles County 65-39 to complete the sweep of the season series.
The Tigers (14-7, 5-1 District) never trailed in the contest and held a 24-18 lead at the break before blowing the game open in the second half by outscoring the Bobcats 41-21 over the final two quarters to coast to their third straight win over Giles County (5-12, 1-6 District).
Although the Bobcats recorded nine blocked shots, Marshall County still racked up 28 field goals on 51 percent shooting and knocked down 6-of-13 three-point attempts with the aid of 16 assists. The Tigers also outrebounded the Bobcats 29-16, held an 11-6 edge on the offensive glass, and committed only 13 turnovers.
"We played well and we played together," said MCHS coach Arnett Bodenhamer. "We worked on taking it to the basket the last two days instead of settling for threes. We moved the ball and didn't let it stick. The guys were really unselfish tonight."
Guards Malek Sain and D'Andre Brown were the Tigers' main offensive catalysts, as Sain poured in a game high 18 points on 8-of-14 shooting while Brown hit 8-of-13 shots and finished with 16 points and five assists.
Curtis Keiler tallied eight points as well and Kacy Pleas added seven points. Darius McKenzie also notched four points, while Kevon Maxwell and Montrell Harris chipped in three points apiece. Caleb Fields, Trey Crutcher, and Quavion Harris rounded out the scoring for Marshall County with two points each.
The Tigers played tenacious defense as well and forced 21 Giles County turnovers while limiting the Bobcats to a mere nine field goals on 26 percent shooting, which included a 5-of-18 effort from beyond the arc.
"I really liked our defensive intensity and I think that we wore them down in the second half," said Bodenhamer.
Aspen Bush paced Giles County with 10 points and Jordan Gilbert tallied eight points. Sam Hatfield also notched six points for the Bobcats, while Dontarius Gilbert and Stephan Wade both had five points.
The Tigers knocked Giles County on their heels at the start of the game, as they sprinted out to a 17-2 lead late in the first quarter on the strength of seven points from Sain and four points from Brown.
After the Bobcats tallied the last six points of the first period to cut the deficit to 17-8, Marshall County began the second quarter with a 7-2 spurt, highlighted by a Keiler trey, to open up a 24-10 advantage.
Giles County began to chip away at Marshall County's lead and scored the final eight points of the half to narrow the gap to 24-18 at intermission before Jordan Gilbert drained a three at the start of the third period to shave the deficit to 24-21.
The Tigers quickly righted the ship and put together a 19-3 run behind six points from Brown, five points from Sain, and a Keiler trey to sail out to a 43-24 lead late in the third quarter.
The Bobcats trimmed the deficit to 45-29 in the waning moments of the third period, but Marshall County kept their foot on the gas and outscored Giles County 17-4 over the next 6:08 with the help of a Maxwell trey and four points apiece from Brown and Sain to forge a 62-33 advantage before taking home the 65-39 win.