After a one-point loss to Ruckel Middle, the Destin Marlins bounced back to post a 52-36 win over the Bruner Spartans in boys middle school basketball action in Fort Walton Beach.
“I’ve got to say that the first half, in my two years in coaching here, was the most complete that we’ve played,” said Destin Coach Bob Davies. “I thought every one stepped up.”
Destin had three players hit double figures. Asa Newell led the Marlins with 16 points, Maddax Fayard tossed in 14 and Isaac Hancey knocked down 13.
“Isaac has gone from being a 3-point shooter to an all around flat scorer,” Davies said, noting that Hancey has been taking it to the basket of late.
As a matter of fact, Hancey put the Marlins on the board first with a couple of free throws he was awarded after picking up a foul while driving to the basket.
The scoring went back and fourth the first three minutes before Destin pulled away. Newell took the ball inside for a couple of baskets with Hancey swishing a 3-pointer from the left corner. Bruner picked up one more bucket before Fayard hit a basket for a 16-8 lead at the buzzer.
In the second quarter, Destin continued to outscore the Spartans. Fayard picked up eight points, all inside the paint. Newell put a rebound back for two points, Eric Scott hit two shots from underneath and Hancey knocked down his second 3-pointer of the night. Destin led 33-17 at the break.
In the third, Destin put up 12 points to Bruner’s nine. Newell and Hancey each scored four, while Fayard and Gavin Garrity each picked up two points.
In the fourth quarter, both teams rotated players in and out of the game trying to give everyone playing time. Scoring two points each for Destin were Fayard and Kevin Robertson, Hancey, Newell and Garrity each picked up one.
“The effort was outstanding. We’re back. It’was a good win ... we needed it,” Davies said.
Up next for Destin is a 5:30 p.m. game Jan. 16 at Shoal River in Crestview.