The MMI men's basketball team saw themselves fall behind early to the Lions from Wallace State Community College 9-0 Monday night in ACCC North action. The Tigers did not put points on the scoreboard until the 14:52 mark when freshman Carlos Bell scored off one of his seven offensive rebounds.
Missed shots and turnovers plagued the home squad throughout most the first half until the offense finally got some shots to drop and the defense turned up the pressure. Marion took their first lead, 18-15, with 6:57 left in the first half when freshman Antony Edwards hit his only three-pointer of the night. That lead gradually built to double digits with the Tigers taking a 34-23 lead into halftime.
The second half started similar to the first half, as MMI allowed Wallace State to hang around and cut into the lead. The Lions were able to get within two points half through the period before sophomore Treyvon Francis extended it back to four with two key free throws (9:32).
The Lions' shooters started to warm up from behind the three-point line and had a chance to tie the game with five minutes to play when freshman Mikel Davis took a charge and gave the momentum back to Marion. A three pointer by Bell extended the lead to ten with under four minutes to play, causing Wallace State to foul. Key free throws by Quamauri Hardy and Bell secured the win for the Tigers.
Hardy led Marion with 16 points and five assists. Bell finished with another double-double; 12 points and 11 rebounds. Francis scored 12 points with four rebounds and three assists while teammate Charles Tripp added 10 points and six rebounds. John Clayton (7), Mikel Davis (4), Deshawn Roumou (4), and Edwards (3) rounded out the scoring for the Tigers.
MMI (15-3, 3-2) will travel to Lawson State Community College Thursday evening for another ACCC north game.