Here we go again.
Two days after being handled fairly easily by Ohio Wesleyan, the Marietta College men's basketball team found itself down 17-2 to Waynesburg after just seven minutes of play. The Pioneers were just 1-for-10 from the floor at that point, and it looked like it might be another long night for Jon VanderWal's squad.
However, the Pios would go on to outscore the Yellow Jackets 40-11 in the remainder of the first half to take a 40-28 lead at the break and never looked back. The final score had MC on top 90-63 to improve its record to 2-1. Waynesburg fell to 1-2.
JORDAN HOLLAND The Marietta Times
Marietta College’s Jason Humphrey (32) drives for two against Waynesburg at Ban Johnson Arena Tuesday night.
"It felt like we had a little bit of a hangover from the Ohio Wesleyan game. It was brutal," VanderWal said. "It looked just like the Wesleyan game where we couldn't throw it into the ocean. When we don't make shots, it makes our decision making bad. It was really ugly there the first 10 minutes, but I thought the last 30 minutes of the game we played about as good as you can play."
With 12:44 remaining in the first half, senior Jacob Owens hit a 3-pointer to make it 17-5. After a layup and a jumper by sophomore Andy Stegman made it 21-9, senior Jason Humphrey made a layup and junior Tyler Hammond converted a 3-point play to cut the lead to 21-14.
Hammond then hit a mid-range shot, followed by a layup from senior J.J. Martin, to make it 21-18. Down 25-24 with 4:10 remaining in the half, a 3-ball from Tyler Worstell put the Pioneers on top 27-25, and they never trailed again in the game. Humphrey scored four points to along with 3-pointers from Martin, Owens and senior Tyler Worstell down the stretch of the half to extend the lead to 40-28.
Waynesburg (1-2) 28 35 - 63
Marietta (2-1) 40 50 - 90
Waynesburg: Ed Coleman 2 4-4 8, Casey Hope 4 0-0 10, Jacob Fleegle 2 2-2 6, Kurt Bonnet 1 0-0 2, Jason Propst 3 1-3 7, Timmey Kaiser 2 3-4 8, Thomas Ellis 3 4-4 11, Kenny Klase 1 0-0 2, Nate Labishak 2 0-0 4, Byrum Louco 1 1-2 3, Tyler Spence 1 0-0 2; Totals 22 15-19 63
Marietta: Kimmey 2 0-0 6, Hammond 10 3-4 23, Martin 8 0-0 17, Humphrey 3 2-4 8, Davis 1 0-0 3, Worstell 2 0-0 6, Owens 3 0-0 9, Garcia 3 0-1 8, Stegman 2 0-0 4, Stephenson 3 0-0 6; Totals 37 5-9 90
Team stats: Waynesburg: Shooting: 22-58 (37.9 percent) Rebounds: 31 (Ellis 5) Assists: 6 (Labishak 2) Steals: 7 (Ellis 2)
Marietta: Shooting: 37-63 (58.7 percent) Rebounds: 36 (Martin 10) Assists: 18 (Hammond, Humphrey 4) Steals: 6 (Hammond, Humphrey 3)
Next game: Marietta at Wittenberg Wednesday (Nov. 28)
The Pios opened the second half on a 16-4 run, propelled by six points from Hammond and a 3-pointer from senior Scott Kimmey. Hammond led all scorers with 23 points and was 10-for-13 from the floor.
"We started going inside and out, and so we just started getting confident, making one or two shots," Hammond said. "It wasn't just me, it was everybody."
"Tyler had it going here tonight," VanderWal said of his starting point guard. "You can just tell with him some days when he's feeling comfortable. He starts making plays and you've got to give him some freedom. Sometimes we'll have a play call on and he kind of makes a read and does his own thing, and you've got to live with that as a coach because he is such a great playmaker."
Marietta had a 65-48 lead with 8:47 left in the game when it went on a 9-0 run to put the game out of reach for good. Consecutive buckets by Hammond and a jumper from Martin fueled the run.
Late in the game, freshman Luis Garcia came in and added insult to injury, putting up eight points in the final four minutes of the game, as Marietta extended its lead to 90-63 at the final buzzer.
Martin finished with 17 points and a team-high 10 rebounds. For Waynesburg, Thomas Ellis led in scoring with 11 points, while Casey Hope contributed 10 points.
Marietta is back in action next Wednesday when it goes on the road to face Wittenberg.