BBC: O'Connell Wins in Consolation Bracket

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. -- UNC 2010 commitment and his Bishop O'Connell Knights advanced in the consolation bracket of the 2007 Beach Ball Classic by a 74-51 score over the St. Edward (OH) Eagles.

Highlights: (3:40)

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Marshall was looking for teammates first and was content to score only when the opportunity presented itself. He contributed eight points and 10 assists, aiding three double-digit O'Connell scorers, including a game-high 30 from Georgetown signee Jason Clark.

"Most of it is basketball instinct," said Marshall. "If you see your team is struggling to score there is a time to step up, but when you have a player like Jason on your team who is a tremendous scorer you can look to get the team more involved. When they are keying on him, a lot of other people are going to be open so I look to get them involved."

"I was really proud of Kendall tonight," said head coach Joe Wooten. "He dominated the game without scoring. I tell him, 'Kendall, you can tell how good a point guard is by how his team plays.'

"He had 10 assists tonight, and I thought he controlled the game with the ball and by his passing. Then he got some key lay-ups late. I tell him, 'You can beat anybody one-on-one, but they know who you are. You committed to Carolina. They are not going to forget you. He dominated the game in another way."

The Knights were good early, scoring at double the rate of the Eagles for most of the half on their way to a 29-13 margin with around six minutes to go before intermission

"I thought we were 'Bingo-ing' very well--that's our fast break, that's what we call it," said Wooten. "I thought that came from us defending and rebounding. That got us out on the break, and I think we are great on the break. That was excellent, and it wasn't just one guy. Everybody contributed to that."

"It's kind of like what Carolina does," said Marshall. [The other team] scores and then they relax going back going back on defense. That is the easiest time to score is in a fast break set, so we just push it back up on them."

Then the Eagles began to creep back into the game, closing the margin to 35-29 at the half due to some ill-advised shots and fouls by O'Connell.

"I thought we made a lot of silly fouls," said Wooten. "I think they went from 12 to 22 just on the free throw line--and then they hit a three. Then I was proud of our guys because we responded with three or four buckets of our own to take it to 35-29.

The Eagles stayed within striking distance until midway through the second half when the Knights blew the game wide open on the way to the 74-51 final score.

"I think we started defending and getting some stops there," said Wooten "and it started with Marcus Carmon's charge to give us a little momentum. Then we shared the ball well."

"We kept the intensity up," said Marshall. "They started yelling and screaming on the bench and getting excited. In the first half they crept back up on us, but we had to match their intensity and take it up a notch…

"I realized that they were getting tired and we were starting to wear them down. One thing Coach talks about is Chinese water torture--if you keep going after them long enough they are going to break and I think we did that."

Highlights: (3:16)

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Dec. 28, 2007

Marshall, O'Connell Fall in Second Round

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. -- UNC 2010 commitment Kendall Marshall's Bishop O'Connell Knights fell 76-70 to the Wheeler Wildcats in the second round of the 2007 Beach Ball Classic.

In a game with a high number of possessions, O'Connell used precision passing and a back-in-your-face offense to take an early lead and keep a working margin of six to eight points for much of the first half. Georgetown 2008 signee Jason Clark led the way with 17 points and 11 rebounds, and three other Knights scored in double figures.

"We cam out playing together as a team," said Marshall who finished the night with 12 points, five rebounds, seven assists, a blocked shot, and a steal. "We knew that they liked to fast break, but we didn't know how fast they would get back on defense, so right when they scored we pushed it right up their back and got some quick, easy buckets that way."

The Wildcats used a combination of athleticism and consistent perimeter shooting to stay close with 2008 Miami signee Dequan Jones (19 pts, 10 rebs) dunking in transition, and 2010 point guard Phil Taylor (23 pts, 5 assts) hitting from the outside.

"They are very talented," said Marshall. "They have a lot of skill players who can shoot the ball, and they hit all their free throws at the end of the game. It was hard for us to guard them one-on-one."

First-half foul trouble had both O'Connell stars, Clark and Marshall, on the bench for a short stretch and the Wildcats inched their way closer, trailing by just two, 35-33, at intermission.

After Wheeler took a brief lead at 37-35 the Knights spurted out to a nine-point lead midway through the second half. Then the well-oiled machine began to spit and sputter.

"I thought we were good early," said head coach Joe Wooten. "We battled, defended, we rebounded really well, and then we just kind of got away from it… I thought when we got up nine in the second half I thought we got away from what we do. I called several timeouts for it. That allowed them to get back in the game, and they took advantage of it.

While O'Connell was missing shots or turning the ball over, Wheeler was scoring in transition, from the perimeter, or from offensive rebounds.

"Rebounding wins games," said Marshall. "They killed us on the backboards. There was one [span] in the middle of the second half where they got four offensive rebounds on four possessions straight. That just can't happen. That was a big run for them, and we never recovered."

Wheeler's Richard Howell (2009) was a big part of the Wildcat's rebounding advatage with 15 on the night in addition to his 18 points.

The Knights were visibly dejected after a game they had in their grasp against a team that had superior athleticism, but they are looking forward and taking a lesson with them.

"We have to learn that if we continue to execute our stuff this would have been our game," said Wooten, "but we didn't… We got away from it. They defended [well]. Then we tried to go one-on-one more rather than make a move and then take the one-on-one opportunity."

The Knights move into the consolation bracket and play for a place in the fifth-place game on Saturday afternoon.

Dec. 27, 2007

1st Half Highlights: (2:00)

Interview: (5:36)

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Marshall, O'Connell Advance in a Rout

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. -- UNC 2010 commitment Kendall Marshall and the Bishop O'Connell Knights advanced in the first round of the 2007 Beach Ball Classic in a 69-32 rout over the host team Myrtle Beach Seahawks.

"We came out ready to play throughout the whole day just thinking about the game," said Marshall. "We knew we had to make an opening statement coming off of a bad performance last year."

The Knights jumped out to an early lead and coasted into the half leading 40-13 against an overmatched Myrtle Beach squad.

"Myrtle Beach came out and competed, but I was really proud of our guys because we stuck to what we do," said O'Connell head coach Joe Wooten. "We really shared the ball, and Kendall is a big part of that because he gives it up so willingly. We shared the ball, we defended, we ran--we played our game and that is a credit to our guys."

Georgetown 2008 commitment Jason Clark led the way with 23 points and eight rebounds, and five Knights contributed six to eight points, including seven from Marshall, who chipped in two rebounds, and eight assists in a game that was never in doubt. Unofficially, Marshall had five additional assist opportunities thwarted by missed shots or fouls on the shooter.

"This was a low-scoring game for Kendall, but that's because I didn't play him much--most of the second half--because we have, hopefully, a couple of more games coming up if we play like we can."

Harvard commitment, 6-10 Frank Ben-Eze scored no points, but he patrolled the paint blocking two shots and deterred the Seahawks from even entering the lane for much of the night and the perimeter shots weren't falling.

"[Marshall's] role is to run the show and give the ball up," said Wooten. "He has probably been averaging about 16 or 17 points for us. His role is also to knock down the three, and he has gotten better at the pull-up and taking the ball to the rim. We like for him to be an all-around player from the point guard spot. He gets everyone involved early, and if it's a tight game he's going to get involved late; that's where a lot of his points come from."

"I go out with the same mindset every game," said Marshall. "We know that Jason and I are the main scorers, but everyone else can contribute. When the defense collapses on us that gives wide open looks for our teammates."

Marshall went to the bench early in the second half after the margin became insurmountable, and Wooten went deep into his bench, playing 12 players before the night was over. Marshall cheered on his teammates all the way to the final horn.

"That's to get other players in the game to get them game-time experience," said Marshall. "We have a big game to get ready for and coach wanted to rest me for that."

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