By halftime of Monday’s Class 3A girls bidistrict basketball game, Parkview Baptist School found itself in a hole it was unable to dig out of.
The cause might have been playoff jitters for a young team, but it was the lightning quick defense of 17th-seeded Marksville High that forced the issue as the Tigers rolled to a 44-20 win at No. 16 Parkview.
Marksville (16-14) was led by Deslin Jacob’s 16 points, and had six other players score as the Tigers rotated nine players while pressing for much of the game.
Brionna Napoleon (8 points) and Shontera Williams (7) were other top scorers for Marksville, which advances to play top-seeded Albany, an 83-28 winner over No. 32
Skyler Goodwin topped Parkview (17-8) with 9 points, but most of those came after halftime, when the Eagles trailed 24-5.
Parkview coach Don Green acknowledged it was one of the Eagles’ least productive halves of the season, but added a caveat.
“(Marksville) had a lot to do with that,” Green said. “They’re a very aggressive defensive team. And it’s difficult when you miss seven layups, and you’re 1-for-6 from the free-throw line in a game like this.”
Those stats were only from the first half, when Parkview made just 2-of-17 field-goal attempts. The Eagles have just one senior on their roster and never found an offensive rhythm until the third quarter.
“I don’t think (Parkview) was ready for it,” Marksville coach Heath Lewis said of his team’s defensive pressure. “In the second half, they came out and did a better job, and I thought we were a little flatter, too.”
Parkview opened the third quarter with four straight baskets and went on to outscore Marksville 12-1, cutting the deficit to 25-17 with 2:35 left in the quarter.
It was as close as Parkview would get.
Jacob hit two free throws to boost the lead back to 10 and added a steal, which led to another basket and pushed the lead to 33-19 entering the fourth quarter.
“We made some (halftime) adjustments emotionally, because I think that’s what our biggest problem was,” Green said. “We came out and made a few layups, made a few free throws, and then we just hit a plateau.”
Jacob opened the fourth for Marksville with another steal and layup. Parkview was plagued by turnovers and managed only a free throw in the final period.
“Our youth has been a blessing, and it’s obviously something we can build on,” Green said. “But it is what it is, and it showed tonight.”
The second quarter was one of frustration for both teams, when Marksville had only stretched a 13-4 first quarter lead to 17-5 with less than two minutes remaining in the half.
The teams shared 21 turnovers in the quarter, including a stretch of 14 turnovers in a combined 18 possessions. Napoleon hit two free throws and scored at close range, helping Marksville close the half with a 7-0 surge.
Goodwin sparked Parkview’s third-quarter comeback with a pair of driving baskets in the opening minute. Marksville was called for a foul underneath the basket as Goodwin’s shot went in, and Nicky Dawson hit a layup off the ensuing inbound pass.
Williams hit a free throw to give Marksville a 25-13 lead, but Goodwin came back to score on two drives. With 2:35 left in the third, Parkview appeared to have life as it trailed 25-17.
“I got a little worried in the third quarter but substitutions helped out a lot” Lewis said. “Girls came off the bench and kept the pressure on. When you’re pressing, that’s always a key to have more than five or six girls.”