TYLER – Marshall quarterback JJ Green enjoyed breakout success as a sophomore last year. And if Friday night’s season-opening performance is any indication, that might have only been the beginning.

Green passed for 314 yards and accounted for all six Mavericks touchdowns in Marshall’s 42-29 season-opening win over Tyler Lee at CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium.

“I’m proud of my teammates out here doing our job and playing as a team,” said Green (6-4, 170), a dual-threat quarterback in the 2020 class with early FBS offers from Nebraska, Ole Miss, and Texas State. “I’m happy.”

Green completed 15 of 25 attempts and connected on five touchdown passes, all to his trio of Division I recruits at receiver. He also added 36 yards on the ground, including a 25-yard touchdown run.

“You’ve gotta give them credit, they had some athletes, really good athletes,” said Lee head coach Kurt Traylor of Marshall. “We didn’t do a good job of game-planning them, we didn’t do a good job of matching them up. And that’s on me. I put it all on me. We’ll get it fixed.”

Marshall (1-0) took control of the game with a 21-point second quarter, which led to a 28-14 halftime lead. The Mavs scored on their second play of the third, the first of two, three-touchdown leads in the second half.

“Our coaches brought us into practice working hard,” Green said. “Our mindset was we weren’t gonna lose this game. This is what we do.”

Marshall receiver Tahj Washington had a team-high eight receptions for 158 yards and a touchdown. De’Kendrick Bender caught three balls for 73 yards and two touchdowns. Junior wideout Savion Williams had a pair of 27-yard scoring receptions as well.

“One time I threw to a touchdown to De’Kendrick and all three of them were open,” Green said of his star-studded receiving corps. “I just had to pick one. They’re great playmakers.”

Lee (0-1) got a solid debut performance from junior quarterback Mark Patton, a transfer from Malakoff. He passed for 273 yards and two scores.

“I like how we controlled the offense,” Traylor said of Patton. “He made some unbelievable throws and he was relaxed at the start. He hadn’t played quarterback since his ninth-grade year. But he comes out here and starts and you wouldn’t have known it. He’s got a bright future ahead of him.”

Lee receiver Zaylon Walker caught six passes for 177 yards and a touchdown, while Te’vion Massey had three receptions for 81 yards and a score.

“He can grow so much,” Traylor said of Walker, who had the night’s biggest play for Lee, a 96-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter. “I always say the work you put in, in the dark shines in light, and he’s just now learning how to practice.”

Marshall and Lee went back-and-forth in the early going.

Green connected with Williams for a 7-0 Marshall lead with 4:06 to play in the opening quarter, which was followed by Patton’s 96-yard scoring strike to Walker.

Bender was on the receiving end of a 28-yard touchdown pass from Green before Lee responded with Jamar Arceneaux’s 2-yard scoring run.

Arceneaux finished with 104 yards on 12 rushing attempts, filling the shoes of starting running back Ladarius Wickware, who injured his right ankle in the first quarter and did not return.

Green’s touchdown run with less than two minutes to play in the half gave Marshall the lead for good, and with just four seconds remaining until halftime, Green found Bender for a 31-yard touchdown.

Washington outraced the Lee defense for a 45-yard scoring reception that pushed Marshall’s lead to 35-14 just seconds into the third quarter.

“Just blown assignments, very fixable,” Traylor said of his defense’s struggles. “I could’ve completed about 99 percent of those passes.”

Lee answered later in the third on Massey’s 36-yard touchdown catch, but the Mavericks effectively put the game out of reach on the first play of the fourth on Green’s second touchdown pass to Williams.

The Red Raiders return to action next Saturday against crosstown rival John Tyler (0-1).

“This one game doesn’t define our whole season, so we can’t think like that,” Traylor said. “I know it’s a big game and we’ve got another big game next weekend. You just got to flush it and move on.”

For Marshall, it renews its century-long rivalry with Longview (1-0) at home next Friday night.

“We’re gonna take everything positive from this game and build on it for next game,” Green said.

Marshall 42, Tyler Lee 29

At CHRISTUS TMF Rose Stadium, Tyler

Marshall            7    21      7      7    –     42
Lee                   7      7      7      8    –    29

First Quarter
MAR—Savion Williams 27 pass from JJ Green (Melvin Salinas kick), 4:06.
LEE—Zaylon Walker 96 pass from Mark Patton (Mason Magers kick), 3:44.
Second Quarter
MAR—De’Kendrick Bender 28 pass from Green (Salinas kick), 11:16.
LEE—Jamar Arceneaux 2 run (Magers kick), 5:57.
MAR—Green 25 run (Salinas kick), 1:48.
MAR—Bender 31 pass from Green (Salinas kick), :04.
Third Quarter
MAR—Tahj Washington 45 pass from Green (Salinas kick), 11:11.
LEE—Te’vion Massey 36 pass from Patton (Magers kick), 5:07.
Fourth Quarter
MAR—Williams 27 pass from Green (Salinas kick), 11:53.
LEE—Jordan Printers 2 run (Malik Hall run), 7:27.

                                   MAR                  LEE
First Downs                       17                    17
Total Yards                       430                  434
Rushes-Yards              29-116            44-161
Passing Yards                   314                273
Comp.-Att.-Int.           15-25-0          13-32-0
Punts-Avg.                    6-37.5            4-35.5
Fumbles-Lost                     0-0                1-0
Penalties-Yards               12-98               4-24

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHING—Marshall, Treylin Lewis 19-78, JJ Green 8-36, Tahj Washington 2-2, Dominique Williams 1-0. Lee, Jamar Arceneaux 12-104, Jordan Printers 11-46, Jamarion Miller 7-19, Ladarius Wickware 4-16, Malik Hall 2-0, Jamichael Turman 4-(-2), Sebastian Grady 1-(-6), Mark Patton 3-(-16).
PASSING—Marshall, Green 15-25-0—314. Lee, Patton 13-31-0—273, Walker 0-1-0—0.
RECEIVING—Marshall, Washington 8-158, De’Kendrick Bender 3-73, Savion Williams 2-54, Demarcus Williams 1-16, Darius Williams 1-13. Lee, Walker 6-177, Te’vion Massey 3-81, Andrew Bergfeld 1-9, Miller 1-8, Wickware 1-2, Arceneaux 1-(-4).