HENRY — After the Henry boys basketball team scored just five points in the third quarter and allowed Marquette to tie Friday’s Tri-County Conference game, Mallards coach Steve Self had some words for his team between quarters.
“I yelled a lot at them,” Self joked. “I don’t really know what I said, but I yelled a lot.”
His team got the message.
After Henry shot 2-for-10 in the third quarter and had more turnovers than field goals, the Mallards righted the ship in the fourth as they retook the lead and pulled away in the final minutes to secure a 44-38 win Friday.
“They sort of turned it on. I think they had more of a sense of urgency when there was five minutes left on the clock as opposed to when it was the third quarter,” Self said. “I just didn’t think we got up and got in them and guarded them. But in the end, we had more of a sense of urgency and forced them into some tough shots.”
After Henry (7-1, 2-0 TCC) took a 26-19 lead at half, it scored just five points in the third quarter as the Crusaders’ offense came alive to outscore the Mallards 12-5 in the frame to tie the game at 31-31.
After teams traded buckets to start the fourth quarter, a free throw by Henry’s Jake Schlosser gave the Mallards a 34-33 lead with 5:45 left in the contest and started an 11-6 closing surge.
A basket from Henry sophomore Kyle Henderson, six points from junior Nathan Helle and another free throw from Schlosser helped lift Henry to the victory.
“We got a lot of stops late in the game, and that really boosted our team,” Schlosser said. “We always had confidence, and every one of our players can handle the ball and take care of it.”
Despite trailing, Marquette (2-6, 0-2 TCC) closed the third quarter on a 6-0 run.
Down 31-25 with 2:16 left in the quarter, Marquette’s Andrew Allen put in a basket to start the surge before Jacob Martini had a putback and Elliot Kowalski had a steal and a layup at the third-quarter buzzer to tie the game.
“I was real proud of the guys,” Marquette coach Mike McDonald said. “We really cleaned up some stuff from what we did on Tuesday (in a loss at Galva). We were strong tonight. Henry is a real solid ball club, and they have five kids that can bang the glass hard. But we did a good job tonight.”
However, despite tying the game, Marquette was never able to take the lead and never had the lead in the game.
“It was tied, but they were never able to get that bucket to get past us,” Self said. “I thought that was huge from a mental standpoint for our kids.”
The Mallards also got to the foul line more often.
While both teams made 17 field goals — including one 3-point shot each — Henry was 9-for-18 from the charity stripe while Marquette was just 3-for-4.
Helle finished with a game-high 14 points and added nine rebounds for the Mallards, while Henderson had 11 points and Ryan Condit had a game-high 10 rebounds.
Schlosser also added nine points and six rebounds.
Joe Garland scored a team-high 10 points for the Crusaders, while Elliot Kowalski had a game-high 10 rebounds before he fouled out.
Note: Marquette rolled to a 53-18 blowout win in the sophomore contest. Joe Wheatland scored a game-high 12 points for the Crusaders, while Henry was led by five points from Isaiah Groom.
Jared Bell can be reached at 220-6938, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @NT_SportsJared.