District-Leading Marshall Pulls Away for 64-41 Win at Pine Tree
LONGVIEW -- Veteran Marshall coach Bobby Carson knows his team's press-happy, three-point-flinging style takes chances.
But when it's rolling, it's really rolling, and that was the case Tuesday at the Pirate Center. Marshall hit nine three-pointers and forced turnover after turnover during a couple of game-changing runs to pull away for a 64-41 win at Pine Tree, pushing the Mavericks' District 14-4A-leading record to 7-1.
Marshall (23-8) hit 9 of 24 three-pointers for a respectable 37.5-percent clip. Point guard Chris Brown was efficient and made plays on both ends of the floor, finishing with 13 points, seven assists, and four steals.
Pine Tree got an emphatic, foul-drawing, tomahawk dunk in transition from 6-foot-5 junior Caleb Chumley late in the first quarter to trim Marshall's lead to one point, but the Mavericks didn't panic at all.
On the ensuing possession, Garren Jernigan hit one of his three first-half trifectas at the first-quarter buzzer for a 15-11 lead. That sparked an 18-4 run that gave Marshall a 30-15 lead with two minutes left in the first half.
"We know that when we press we're gonna give up some easy baskets. If we give up a two, we try to come back and get a three," Carson said. "There's no point in crying about it. It's one of those things that once the basket is scored, it's over with. (The dunk) was still just two points. It was a pretty dadgum neat dunk, but it still was only two points. He's quite a player."
Chumley, who led Pine Tree (10-20, 3-5) with 16 points and eight rebounds, scored on Pine Tree's first second-half possession to cut Marshall's lead to 30-21. Pine Tree hung around, trailing 40-29 later in the third, but Marshall answered again. Back-to-back three-pointers from Shimar Jones and Jay McKnight, who scored a game-high 17 points, fueled an 8-0 run for a 19-point edge with 1:45 left in the period. Brown then hit a pullup 35-footer at the third-quarter buzzer for a commanding 56-34 lead.
"We feel like if we can force a turnover and hit a three in transition then it really is like a backbreaker," Carson said. "Not that we don't want to get the layups, but we teach our kids to run to the corners and try to get the ball in Chris Brown's hands, and he does his little ol' thing."
Jernigan and Jones, who came off the bench, scored nine points apiece, along with Pine Tree's Robert Hines. Marshall's T.J. Maxfield and Pine Tree's Trever Barker each scored seven points.
With a 23-point advantage, Marshall stalled in the halfcourt. The Mavericks ran a minute and a half off the clock leading 62-39 halfway through the quarter. Marshall again stalled with two minutes left and ran the remainder of the clock out.
Marshall notched the 23-point win despite shooting 1-for-5 from the free-throw line compared to Pine Tree's 13-for-23.
Marshall hosts Texas High on Friday in the Mavericks' regular-season home finale. Pine Tree hosts Sulphur Springs in the Pirates' regular-season home finale.
Marshall 64, Pine Tree 41
Pirate Center, Longview
Marshall -- 15 15 26 8 -- 64
Pine Tree -- 11 8 15 7 -- 41
Marshall (23-8, 7-1) -- Jay McKnight 17, Chris Brown 13, Garren Jernigan 9, Shimar Jones 9, T.J. Maxfield 7, Jim Brown 5, Roderick Anderson 2, Tyrice Clark 2.
Pine Tree (10-20, 3-5) -- Caleb Chumley 16, Robert Hines 9, Trever Barker 7, Blake Adams 4, Victor Hawkins 4, Mason Hays 1.