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Hutch Trinity, Berean too much for Marion boys’ basketball

Staff writer

Marion lost to Hutch Trinity on Friday night 48-35.

It was a straightforward game. There wasn’t a concrete turning point, or a distinct tactical advantage the Celtics had.

Hutch Trinity was just older, wiser, and stronger. It built a lead, maintained it, and that was how the game went.

“I thought our effort was great, and the focus was pretty good, in the first half especially,” head coach Jeff McMillin said. “We got to points in the second half where from some of the stuff they were doing, and maybe some physical fatigue, it wasn’t as great. Overall though, I thought the boys had a real good, concerted effort tonight.”

Financial advisers would marvel at how Hutch Trinity banked small runs, 5-0 here, 4-0 there, to accrue a sizable lead. On the flip side, McMillin was proud the Warriors never allowed a big run to the more-experienced Celtics.

“As hard as it is for us to score sometimes, we always did step up and get a bucket when they were starting to pull away a little bit,” he said. “So they never did put a long run on us.

“We’re showing some improvement.”

That’s what makes this loss for Marion relatively easy to swallow: This season, McMillin has emphasized, is about improvement.

“There’s a whole different mindset,” McMillin said. “When you’re a senior-laden team, and the emphasis is on having a good season for the seniors, this game is one you’re like, ‘Oh, we didn’t pull it out.’ When you’re in a building mindset, then all you’re after is what the effort looks like.”

McMillin’s team is mostly underclassmen with just two juniors and two seniors. In terms of the effort from the young Warriors, it wasn’t a bad loss.

“I wasn’t real disappointed at all,” McMillin said.

Senior Bret Voth and sophomore Dylan Pippin had 10 points apiece to lead the Warriors, while junior Nicholas Stuchlik led in rebounds with 7.

Sophomore Mason Pedersen had 8 points and Stuchlik had 7. Senior Jacob Baldwin grabbed 6 rebounds.

As for how Hutch Trinity was able to, over time, accrue the advantage, McMillin said it was mostly due to turnovers. Marion finished the game with 12.

“Obviously you don’t shoot when you don’t have the ball,” he said. “Can’t shoot, can’t score; can’t score, can’t win.”

McMillin knew his team would have growing pains this season. But he’s happy to be seeing the growth that’s come with them.

“They were bigger and stronger than us,” he said. “Our guys battled with them and rose to the challenge. I was happy, I was proud of that.”

After competing with an experienced Hutch Trinity team Friday, Marion was again overmatched Tuesday at Berean.

Marion couldn’t keep the game close like it did against Hutch, however, and lost 53-24.

“We got pounded pretty good,” McMillin said.

Pedersen and Baldwin led the Warriors with 9 points apiece, while Voth, Stuchlik, and Pippin had 2 each.

McMillin gave credit to Berean, saying they made everything difficult for Marion. McMillin’s message to his players afterward was to not get down on themselves for the loss.

“We make progress about an inch a day,” he said. “You can’t let the adversity of one game knock you back a foot.”

Last modified Jan. 15, 2015

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