Tigers rout Raiders, hit the road
The Marshall County Tigers welcomed long-time rival Spring Hill to Dottie Kelso Memorial Gymnasium on Tuesday night looking to move into second place in the district with a win over the Raiders after knocking off Cascade last Friday at Wartrace.
The Tigers (8-9, 2-1) would offer no quarter to the Raiders (3-8, 0-3) on this night, jumping out to an insurmountable 34-15 halftime lead and finishing off the visitors 61-37 despite cycling in subs at the end of the second period and winning its second District 12-AA game in a row.
Chip on shoulder
"We came into this week with a chip on our shoulder because we want to win the district," forward D'Andre Brown said. "We want to go ahead and host the district and go ahead to that next level, somewhere we haven't been in a long time. So we come out here and played our hearts out and hoped that we can continue to do this."
Despite beating the number three-ranked team in the statewide AP poll and an undefeated Cascade team last Friday, Marshall County coach Arnett Bodenhamer says that win did not go to his player's head and in fact, they aren't even thinking about the game anymore.
"We don't even think about (the win)," Bodenhamer claims. "And that's not to be arrogant or anything like that. We don't even think about it because whoever shows up, number one, two, three, 12, 157- we've got to win."
"We dug ourselves in a hole in the first semester and we're trying to get even. And whoever is there, we've got to bring our 'A' game. And not to say that tonight was our 'A' game, but we played well."
Caleb Fields started the game off with four free throws for the early Marshall County lead and a K.J. Johnson drive and layup pushed the lead to 15-3 five minutes later.
Darius McKenzie hit two free throws to push the lead to 17-6 with 42 seconds left in the opening frame and the rout was on, culminating in a McKenzie rebound and floor length outlet to Malek Sain, who finished the play off with a tomahawk jam and a 44-22 lead with two minutes left in the third quarter.
Subs hit floor
The second and fourth quarters were mostly filled with Marshall County subs getting some much needed time and experience on the court.
"We played hard and everybody got an opportunity to do something tonight," Bodenhamer said. "And that's what we've got to do. In games like this everybody's got to show improvement. And I think everybody did that. Everybody brought something to the table at some point in time."
Sain led 11 Tiger players that scored with 15 points in one half of playing time and added three rebounds, two assists and two steals.
"We are just now realizing we lost 10 games and we have a bunch of talent so we shouldn't be losing those games," the senior guard said. "It's district time so whoever loses, loses out on a good seed. We're trying to get that number one seed."
D'Andre Brown chipped in 12 points and Caleb Fields scored nine points, passed for four assists, and had three steals
McKenzie led the Tigers with six rebounds.
The Tigers defense held the Raiders in single digits in every quarter except the fourth when Spring Hill's starters played against the Marshall County reserves and no Spring Hill player scored over six points (Chyrahko Goff) and just three more scored five.
The Tigers will look for its third district win in a row on tonight night against the Page Patriots at Rudderville.
Marshall County 17 17 18 9-61
Spring Hill 6 9 9 13-37
Spring Hill (37)- Daniel Johnson 5, Rodrigo Valdez 5, Noah Williams 2, Chase Singleton 2, Maleik Young 2, Chyrahko Goff 6, Noah Myles 5, Trent Wilfong 3, Alex Harrison 3, Terrell Nuon 2, Jonah Rolfson 2.
Marshall County (61)- Caleb Fields 9, Keshawn Gentry 3, Malek Sain 15, KJ Johnson 6, JD Chavours 2, Keevon Maxwell 4, D'Andre Brown 12, Darious McKenzie 2, Dayveonte Brown 2, Marcus Dodson 2, Quavion Harris 4.
Three-point goals: Spring Hill (4) - Valdez, Goff, Mayes, Harrison. Marshall County (1)-Sain.