Market Tree advances to finals with wins over RCS, Rector
The Marked Tree Indians used a huge second quarter to get by Ridgefield Christian and a final period comeback to down Rector to reach the finals of the boys' Division I NEA Invitational Tournament.
Leading 13-11 after one period, the Indians outscored Ridgefield Christian 19-2 in the second period before coasting to the 57-36 win
Andy Newman opened the scoring in the game for Ridgefield with a three-pointer from the left corner at 7:34 for a 3-0 lead. Allen Buchanan got inside for an Indians basket to make it 3-2. Daniel Rucker grabbed an offensive rebound and scored for Marked Tree giving them a 4-3 lead. Buchanan was fouled at 5:35 and hit both free throws to make it 6-3 Marked Tree. Jacob Reeves tied it for Ridgefield as the canned a three-pointer to make it 6-6 with 5:07 left in the opening period. Buchanan made a lay up and Ivy hit two free throws to put the Indians up 10-6. Reeves canned another three to make it a one point game at 10-9. Buchanan worked his way inside for a basket at 2:03 making the score 12-9 Marked Tree and was fouled on the play. Buchanan's free throw made it 13-9. Ridgefield's Caleb Moss got an offensive rebound and put it back in with five seconds left to set the first period score at 13-11 Marked Tree.
The Indians used a 19-2 second quarter to take control of the game. Buchanan got the period started with a steal and a monster slam to make it 15-11 Indians. Ivy got a fast break basket and was fouled at 6:46. Ivy's free throw was good making it 18-11. Reeves got a short jumper to fall for Ridgefield to make it 18-13. The Indians closed out the period with a 14-0 run to take a 19 point lead into half. Ivy drilled a three-pointer to start the run at 4:16. Buchanan scored the next six points as he got free for a two-handed slam, hit two free throws and get got inside for a basket making it 27-13. Keland Perry netted a three-pointer at 1:34 and Connor Fields closed the run with a lay up with 59 seconds left in the period.
Andy Newman made a three-pointer for Ridegield to open the third period making the score 32-16 Marked Tree. Ivy got a steal and lay up making it 34-16 with 6:15 left. Moss got inside for a Ridgefield basket to make it 34-18. Marked Tree then went on a 14-0 run to increase their lead to 30 and invoked the mercy rule. Buchanan hit two free throws, Perry got inside for a basket and Cameron Mitchell canned a three to make it 41-18 with 2:31 left in the third period. Buchanan slammed home an alley-oop pass from Ivy before Mitchell got a steal and lay up at 1:40. Mitchell was fouled on the play and hit the free throw to make it 46-18. Buchanan grabbed an offensive board and put it back it to make it 48-18. Chris Beck made two free throws with 22 seconds left for Ridgefield to make it 48-20 after three periods of play.
Terry Carter got inside for the Indians and made a basket at 7:39 to make it 50-20. Cole Williams hit four straight free throws for Ridgefield to cut the lead to 50-24. Ridgefield got back to back baskets from Reeves and Matt Newman to make it 50-28 with 4:15 left. Carter drilled a three-pointer to make it 53-28 Marked Tree. Reeves scored the next five for Ridgefield as he was fouled hitting a basket at 3:39. Reeves' free throw was good to make it 53-31 Indians. Reeves hit two more three throws at 1:41 to make it 53-33. Perry drained a three-pointer to make it 56-33 at 1:18. Trenton Mullons hit a three-pointer for Ridgefield with a minute left and Fields hit a free as time expired to set the final at 57-36.
"We played sloppy as we missed a couple days of practice due to the weather," Marked Tree coach Barbara Wilburn said of her team after the game. "We picked it up after switching our defense to man to man. We shot the ball ok but most of our points came on lay ups and run outs," Wilburn said. When asked about Ivy and Buchanan's contributions Wilburn said, "They are the glue to his team on both offense and defense."
Buchanan led all scorers with 23 points on the night as Ivy finished with 10 points.
Jacob Reeves led Ridgefield Christian with 13 points.
Marked Tree used a 20-7 final period to get by Rector 54-49 and advance to the championship game.
The first period was back and fourth as the teams ended up tied at 13 when it was done. Allen Buchanan opened the scoring by hitting two free throws making it 2-0 at 7:34. Chris Montague hit a jumper for Marked Tree putting them up 4-0. Mitchell Weber got Rector on the board as he got inside for a basket to make it 4-2. Buchanan used a nice spin move to get a lay up for Marked Tree at 4:49 making it 6-2. Daniel White drilled a three-pointer for Rector making it a 6-5 game. Alex Scott put Rector up 7-6 with an inside basket. Buchanan hit a baseline jumper to make the score 8-7 Indians with 2:32 left. Nick Hardin canned a three with 2:08 left to put Rector back up 10-8. Daniel Rucker answered for Marked Tree with a three-pointer to make it 11-10. Mitchell Weber answered with a three of his own from the top of the key giving Rector a 13-11 lead. Buchanan tied the game with a baseline jumper with four seconds left to make it 13-13 after one period.
Reed Weber sank a three from the top of key for Rector to open the second period and make the score 16-13. Rucker hit a jumper to make it 16-15 before Mitchell Weber got inside for a score to push the Rector lead to 18-15. White stretched the lead to six at 21-15 for Rector as he netted a three-pointer at 6:09. Buchanan had a reverse lay up down low to make it 21-17. Reed Weber got inside for the Cougars and Buchanan answered with an inside basket for the Indians to make the score 23-19 Rector. Mitchell Weber got inside for a score at 1:09 and Ivy finished the scoring in the half with a steal and lay up with 18 seconds left to make it 25-21 Rector at the half.
Dillon Shulton scored off a lay up at 7:12 of the third to make it 27-21 Cougars. Rucker and Buchanan both hit one of two free throws to make it 27-23. White made the Rector lead 30-23 with a three-pointer from the top of the key. Buchanan and Rucker made back to back baskets and Ivy hit one of two free throws to cut the lead to 30-28. Reed Weber got inside for a score to make it 32-28 Rector. Rucker scored a basket to make it 32-30 before Mitchell Weber got inside for Rector to make it 34-30. Terry Carter pulled Marked Tree to within one as he hit a basket and was fouled and made the free throw making it 34-33 with 1:31 to play. Mitchell Weber got inside for a score and was fouled for Rector with 52 seconds left. Weber's free throw was good making it 37-33. Carter hit one of two free throws with 38 seconds left before Mitchell Weber scored a basket for Rector with 2 seconds left to make the score 39-34 after the third period.
Marked Tree opened the fourth period with a 10-0 run to take a 44-39 lead. Buchanan hit a jumper to start it at 7:47. Keland Perry got an offensive rebound and scored as Buchanan grabbed an offensive rebound and scored at 6:44. Cameron Mitchell scored on a lay up and Buchanan hit two free throws of finish the run. Reed Weber canned a three and Shulton hit one of two free throws for Rector to make it 44-43. Montague got inside for the Indians for a score and Ivy scored on a lay up and then hit two free throws making it 50-43 Indians. Shulton hit two free throws for Retor and Ivy one for Marked Tree making it 51-44. White made a lay up with 49 seconds left for Rector as Marked Tree scored the last three with two free throws from Carter and one from Buchanan to make the final 54-47.
"We didn't rebound well in the first half but did a better job in the second half," Wilburn said of her team. "We turned up the defense and hit some clutch free throws at the end. I told them we needed three things, free throws, rebounds and intensity. They all stepped it up," Wilburn added.
Buchanan led all scorers with 22 points for Marked Tree. Rucker added 10 points for the Indians.
Mitchell Weber scored 16 points for Rector as White and Reed Weber had 11 and 10 points respectively.