Marshall Beats Pine Tree for First Outright District Title Since 2005
MARSHALL -- Marshall's 0-4 start is barely visible in the rearview mirror, because today the Mavericks are outright district champions for the first time since 2005.
Marshall won its sixth consecutive game Friday night, overcoming five turnovers in a 28-17 win over Pine Tree in a game delayed by more than 40 minutes because of inclement weather.
J.J. Green rushed for 149 yards and two touchdowns on 18 carries to lead Marshall, which reached the state championship game the last time it won a district title. The Mavericks, who are off next week, ended their regular season with a 6-4 record, including a perfect 6-0 in District 16-5A.
Friday marked the first district game Marshall didn't score at least 35 points.
DeKendrick Bender added 35 yards and a touchdown on the ground for Marshall.
Wade Seidel led Pine Tree with 184 yards and a touchdown passing on 14 of 24 completions with two interceptions. Jayden Smith led the Pirates (3-6, 3-2), who have already clinched a playoff berth, in rushing with 119 yards.
Neither team scored in the third quarter after Marshall took a 15-3 lead into halftime. Pine Tree cut the lead to 15-10 on a 2-yard Keshon Williams touchdown with 9:31 left in the game.
Bender scored on a 23-yard touchdown run just over six minutes later to put Marshall up 21-10, and after a Champ Mathis interception, the Mavericks extended the lead to 28-10 on an 11-yard Rodarius Smith touchdown with 41 seconds left in the game.
Seidel hit J.J. Sparkman for a 38-yard touchdown, but only three seconds remained in the game.