Knights in command

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Marion County will be No. 3 seed in district

By Jessica Veatch and Josh Veatch

The Marion County Knights varsity basketball team traveled to Springfield Saturday to play the Washington County Commanders in a pink out for Relay for Life. After defeating the Commanders earlier in the season, the Knights looked to do the same again, and were successful in a 63-54 win. The Knights were led by a career high 25 points from Alex Smith.
Throughout the entire game both teams battled back and forth. In the opening quarter, Marion County jumped out to an 8-2 lead just over a minute into the game. The Commanders fought back as the period progressed, and continued to trim the margin. A late Washington County bucket cut the deficit to just one point, 20-19, as the first frame ended.
Washington County took the lead early in the second quarter with a 6-3 spurt to open the period. Marion County fought back with an 7-0 run of their own to regain a 33-30 lead with a little over two minutes left in the half. A last second basket by Anton Cowherd allowed the Knights to go into the break ahead 35-34.
The Commanders regained the lead early in the second half by opening up the third quarter with a pair of three pointers. Smith scored the first eight points for the Knights in the third quarter to give Marion County a 42-20 advantage. A late bucket by Washington County cut into the Knights lead, but still left them leading 49-45 after three quarters.
Early in the final quarter, the Commanders trimmed the deficit to 52-50, but would get no closer over the remainder of the game. A 5-0 spurt with just under a minute left allowed the Knights to pull away and take a hard fought 63-54 win to improve to 11-13 on the season.  
“We really stepped up our defense,” Head Coach Montrelle Irvin said. “When we shoot the ball well like we did, we are hard to beat, especially when Alex Smith hits five threes.”

Marion Co.    20  15  14  14 - 63
Wash. Co.     19  15  11   9 - 54
Marion County (11-13): Alex Smith 25, Clay Lanham 12, Latrelle Irvin 8, Chase Lancaster 6, Vincent Collins 5, Anton Cowherd 4, Brandon Knopp 2, Anthony Mattingly 1
Washington County (4-17): Alex Marshall 18, Morgan Churchill 10, Jared Young 8, Marquis Stateman 7, Thomas Pettus 6, Evan Blake Burkhead 3, Dylan Bias 2

The Marion County Knights hosted the Taylor County Cardinals on senior night and homecoming Friday night at the Roby Dome in a district matchup. With a win, the Knights had a chance to wrap up the number one seed in the upcoming district tournament, but the Cardinals had other plans. After a three-minute field goal drought to end the game, the Knights fell 49-40, and will now be the No. 3 seed in the district tournament.
Latrelle Irvin led the charge for Marion County in the first quarter by scoring six of the team’s eight points. Even with the strong quarter from Irvin, the Knights trailed 12-8 as the period ended.
In the second quarter, Chase Lancaster sparked Marion County with a pair of three pointers. Three other Knights scored in the frame as Marion County outscored the Cardinals by six points over the eight-minute span. At the half, Marion County had regained a 21-19 lead.
As the third quarter began, the Cardinals were able to retake the lead at 28-27.  Irvin connected on a bucket to give the Knights a 29-28 lead moments later, which would be the last lead of the game for Marion County. Taylor County took a 35-32 advantage into the final period.
The Knights looked as though they might be able to come back from the deficit early in the final period. However, Vincent Collins made the Knights last field goal of the game with just over three minutes left, and Taylor County pulled away and took the 49-40 win. With the loss, the Knights drop to 11-12 on the season.    
“We just couldn’t get anything to fall,” Coach Irvin said. “Our game plan worked out good by stopping their two big players to 10 and nine points. We just couldn’t put up points.”

Taylor County    12   7  16  14 - 49
Marion County     8  13  11   8 - 40
Taylor County (11-12): Austin Webster 15, Quentin Goodin 13, Austin Vanmeter 7, Jordan Cundiff 6, Caleb Wiggington 5, Justice Gregory 3
Marion County (10-13): Latrelle Irvin 18, Chase Lancaster 9, Alex Smith 5, Vincent Collins 5, Clay Lanham 2, Anton Cowherd 1
The Knights have three games left in the regular season. On Friday night, the team will head to North Hardin before returning home for the final two games.  
Next Tuesday, the Knights will host John Hardin and the team will finish out the regular season by hosting LaRue County next Friday night.