YORKTOWN — It may have not been a pretty win, but it was a win nonetheless.
The Mt. Vernon Marauders picked up their final victory over Yorktown on Friday, 52-30. The win also put them at 4-3 in the Hoosier Heritage Conference, sealing a five-way tie for second place.
As the night went on, the Marauder offense got sloppier but their defense held strong.
They came out with an 18-7 lead in the first quarter. Brandon Bell kicked scoring off with a 3-pointer and ended with five points in the quarter, along with Peyton Meadors and Tyler Bostic.
Damari Gatewood dominated the second quarter, scoring nine of Mt. Vernon’s 13 points. Meadors led the third with seven points, finishing 5-for- 5 from the free throw line and Keith Rupert ended things with five points in the fourth.
“It was a good game,” Mt. Vernon head coach Travis Daugherty said. “It became a pretty hard game to play once you create that space.”
The 18-7 score turned into 31-18 at halftime and the third quarter, especially, was a jumble of turnovers, squabbling for rebounds for what felt like minutes and missed shots. The Marauders went from shooting 50 percent in the first half to 33 percent in the second. Yorktown went from 32 to 25 percent.
“Our offense was inconsistent tonight,” Daugherty said. “Our defensive effort was really good.”
The Marauders forced more than 15 Tiger turnovers.
“We just played hard and in a game like this on their senior night, there is a lot of emotion for the home team,” he said. “If you’re going to win as the visitor, you have to bring that effort and I was really pleased with our effort.”
Each team went at least five-deep from their benches so scoring and rebounds were spread out.
Gatewood and Meadors took the lead for the Marauders with 14 points and Bell added 10.
For Yorktown, Bobby Smith had 11 points and the rest was spread between eight scorers.
Despite the jumbled finale, the victory put Mt. Vernon at 13-9 on the season.
The team ended the season with six wins in their last eight games. The beginning of January was their toughest point where they had three overtime games, winning one and losing two.
They will face the winner of Tuesday’s Greenfield-Central versus Connersville game Friday, March 2.
“Both those teams are probably playing as well now as they’ve played all year,” Daugherty said. “But I think we’re playing as well now as we’ve played all year so that’s what you want as a coach.”
Mt. Vernon lost to Connersville 59-55 in the first game of sectionals last year. Connersville was also one of their overtime losses in January. They defeated Greenfield-Central in a quadruple overtime game.
“It’s going to be a real test of toughness and togetherness,” Daugherty added.
The Yorktown victory was a good example of Mt. Vernon’s season — winning as a team.
“We got a lot of good individual guys but we’re better together than we are apart,” Daugherty said.