Warriors roll: Warren drills Marietta 70-47 in boys’ rivalry game

VINCENT – As Warren’s junior varsity coach, Mark Duckworth did not lose a game at Warrior Coliseum last year.

Now as Marietta’s varsity coach, Duckworth’s first return to his old home floor did not net similar results, as the Tigers were blown out 70-47 by the host Warriors in a non-league game Tuesday night.

Evan French drained a deep, buzzer-beating 3-pointer with hands in his face to give Warren a 22-14 lead at the end of the first quarter. The Warriors built their lead to 38-24 at halftime, then used an 18-5 run in the third quarter to put the game out of reach.

Marietta’s plan to keep the game low-scoring was thwarted by Warren’s fast-paced, run-and-gun style of play.

“Our shot selection was so quick that it played into their hands,” Duckworth lamented. “It made the tempo of the game what Warren wanted instead of what we wanted. We were able to handle their pressure, but we were unable to slow back down and get the shots we wanted on every possession. Some of our quick shots led to easy baskets for Warren, and off to the races.”

Easy baskets is exactly what Warren head coach Blane Maddox was hoping for coming in.

“We got our share,” Maddox said.

“They (Marietta) did a good job the first half but I feel like we just wore them down.”

Offensively for Marietta, the bread and butter was once again the frontcourt duo of Jonathan Wood and Braden Riley. Riley and Wood accounted for all 14 of Marietta’s points in the opening period.

After a basket by French made it 10-6, Michael Hall grabbed a steal, took it the length of the court and dished it to Aaron Mazurkiewicz for a layup. Then, Marietta cut its deficit back down to four with baskets by Wood and Riley.

Andrew Henthorn answered with a 3-pointer from the right wing, but Riley recorded a putback basket on the other end to make the score 19-14.

That’s when French delivered a big blow, taking the inbound pass from Tanner Huck at the top of the key and hitting nothing but net from way beyond the arch to make it an 8-point game going into the second quarter. “He’s done that so many times in his career,” Maddox said of French. “He’s so steady.

“I don’t have to draw up much, I just have to give them a little opening and they do the job.”

Jesse Wharff and Zach LaBarre produced back-to-back buckets to open the second period and make it 22-18, but French again responded with a triple to extend Warren’s lead to seven.

Wood and Riley combined for the game’s next four points to cut it to 27-22, but a 3-point play by Hall and four points by Drayer built the Warren advantage to 13 points, a hole too deep for the Tigers to climb out of.

Wood scored a game-high 21 points and Riley added 13 for the Tigers. Marietta was unable to get anything going from outside, as sharpshooter Corey Hill was held to just one point.

“We need balance,” Duckworth said. “We’ve talking about that all year, getting balance and scoring inside and outside.

“I feel like we’re making strides. We’re doing a lot of things correct, but we have a very small margin of error.”

Nine players scored for the Warriors, with Hall’s 19 markers leading the way. French notched 14, Blake Kidder scored 10 and Patton had eight.

“I was proud of the way it was a team effort tonight,” Maddox said. “We talked about Saturday what we wanted to do when we come out, and we did it for the most part.”

From the floor, Marietta was 20-for-34 (59 percent) from inside the arch but 0-for-8 behind it. Warren went 28-for-62 (45 percent) overall.

Marietta (4-4) returns home Friday when it will host Meadowbrook. Warren (7-3) will also be home Friday when it welcomes Logan.