PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. – Marshall County captured third place in the Marlin Christmas Classic with a 58-48 victory over Meade County Saturday at the J.R. Arnold High School gymnasium.
The Marshals fell 56-54 to Starr’s Mill of Fayetteville, Ga., in a semifinal game Friday. Tourney champion Franklin Road Academy of Nashville whipped Meade County 69-38 to make the third-place game an all-Kentucky affair.
Franklin Road Academy pounded Starr’s Mill 72-55 in the championship game.
In first-round action Thursday Marshall County defeated Niceville, Fla., 60-50.
A 4-2 performance in two Christmas tournaments gives the reigning First Region champions a 10-3 record entering the New Year.
A pair of Fourth District games are on tap for Marshall County Friday and Saturday, the first a home game against Calloway County on Friday and then at Paducah Community Christian on Saturday.
Calloway is 9-5 after a 48-42 loss to Union City, Tenn., in the Lakers’ Murray Bank Laker Classic tournament Saturday night. Both Calloway and Marshall are 1-0 in district play, with Marshall owning a victory over Murray and Calloway a winner over Community Christian in December games.
Community Christian is 4-7, 0-2.
Marshall Co. 58,
Meade Co. 48
Mason Wooten came off the bench to score 15 points to lead the Marshals’ victory Saturday.
The 6-0 sophomore guard hit one three-point shot among his six field goals, and he also made both free throws he attempted. That latter statistic set him apart from many of his teammates, as the Marshals managed only nine of 23 free-throw chances – a miserable 39 percent from the line.
Fortunately for Marshall, Meade County wasn’t much better on roughly half as many opportunities (six of 12) and was playing catch-up from the start.
The Marshals trailed 4-0 at the start, but led by a dozen at halftime, 37-15, and blew out to a 22-point cushion at 51-29 after three period.
Meade County fought back to close the gap from as much as 24 points to a more respectable 10 in the final quarter, outscoring the Marshals 19-7 in the final frame.
Chase Clark added 13 for Marshall County and Austin Rentfrow had 11. Zeb Wilson and Bryce Garris paced the Green Wave with 16 points apiece. Garris hit four three-point shots, some of them helping fuel the late rally.
Meade Co. 7 15 29 48
Marshall Co. 12 37 51 58
MEADE CO.: Zeb Wilson 16, Micah Kaiser 2, John Wilson, John Miller, Bryce Garris 16, Will King 3, Luke Wilson 2, Charles Mattingly 9, Trevor Yates, Connor Williams, John Millay
MARSHALL CO.: Landon Taylor 3, Noah Steele 2, Casey White 1, Chase Clark 13, Austin Rentfrow 11, Nathan Solomon 3, D.J. Pigg 5, Nolan Nichols, Mason Wooten 15, Dalton Greenfield 5
Starr’s Mill 56,
Marshall Co. 54
A second-quarter slump put the Marshals into a 10-point hole at halftime and a furious fourth-quarter rally fell just short as the Marshals lost to a Georgia team for the second straight time in this tournament.
Marist School of Atlanta defeated Marshall County in the championship game of the tournament in the Marshals’ third appearance in the event in 2010.
The Panthers led by as much as 11, but saw their big lead melt away in the last four minutes, the Marshall rally fueled in part by a technical foul called on Marshals coach Gus Gillespie early in the final period when he vehemently protested a call.
A three-point shot by freshman guard D.J. Pigg cut the lead to one at 55-54 with 37 seconds remaining. Starr’s Mill guard Will Anda hit one of two free throws and the Marshals could not generate a tying or winning basket.
Chase Clark had 16 points for Marshall County before fouling out in the fourth quarter. Noah Steele added 14. Pigg finished with six, the points coming on two long-range shots. Steele had a trio of three-pointers.
David Watson led all scorers with 19 for Starr’s Mill. Jeremy Vrudny added 14.
Starr’s Mill 16 31 46 56
Marshall Co. 14 21 37 54
STARR’S MILL: Will Anda 7, Matt Walsh 2, Jeremy Vrudny 14, Chandler Barnes, David Watson 19, Cameron Cushing, Josh Roberts, Ryan Avidano 8, Evan Woods 6
MARSHALL CO. : Landon Taylor, Noah Steele 14, Casey White 2, Chase Clark 16, Austin Rentfrow 9, Nathan Solomon 2, D.J. Pigg 6, Nolan Nichols, Mason Wooten 1, Dalton Greenfield 4
Marshall Co. 60,
The Marshals spotted Niceville a double-digit lead, then scrapped their way back to win by double-figures in their tourney opener against Niceville.
Marshall County pushed the lead to as much as 17 points in the final period. The margin of victory would have been bigger, but the Eagles came up with seven points in the final dozen or so seconds to slice away some of the deficit.
Niceville was red-hot at the start, while the Marshals were lethargic. That resulted in a 17-6 lead by the Eagles when Terrance Jones hit a three-point shot with 2:38 left in the opening quarter.
The Marshals managed to cut that to eight points at the first quarter break and then the MC offense, led by Austin Rentfrow, began to click. Marshall County tied it at 26-26 on a pair of free throws by Casey White just inside the three-minute mark and took the lead for the first time at 28-26 when Chase Clark got a layup at the 2:26 mark.
Niceville outscored the Marshals 5-2 over the final two minutes to lead 31-20 at halftime, and then opened the second half with a basket by Nicholas Haynes. But the Marshals scored the next 13 points, shutting out the Eagles until they finally got another bucket, again by Hanes, with 30 seconds left in the period, making it 43-35 after three quarters.
MC led the rest of the way. Rentfrow scored 17 points and Clark added 13. Rentfrow, a 6-7 junior center, also pulled down 12 rebounds.
Haynes paced the Eagles with 14.
Niceville 22 31 35 50
Marshall Co. 14 30 43 60
NICEVILLE: Christopher Forbes 3, JaLen Douglas 2, Connor Ellis 2, Kolt Drautz 2, Nicholas Haynes 16, Kory Amaker 3, Terrance Jones 6, Devyn Wooley, Andrew Mitchell 7
MARSHALL CO.: Landon Taylor, Noah Steele 6, Casey White 6, Chase Clark 13, Austin Rentfrow 17, Nathan Solomon 5, D.J. Pigg 1, Beau Phillips, Cole Barnard 3, Nolan Nichols, Mason Wooten 7, Drew Warnick, Collin Travis, Dalton Greenfield 2