Shoal River Mustangs run over Destin Marlins

Tina Harbuck

From start to finish, the Shoal River Mustangs dominated for a 54-9 win over the Destin Marlins in boys middle school basketball action Thursday night in Destin.

“They’re the best team in the county for a reason,” said Destin Coach Brian McDaniel as he walked off the court.

“They’re big, physical and they hustle and play hard. They’re just better than we are.”

And it proved evident as the Mustangs beat the Marlins up and down the floor and outscored them every quarter.

In the first quarter, the Mustangs put up 10 points before Destin got a shot to fall. Destin’s Kobe Babin went to the line in the last two minutes and hit the second of two tries. Shoal River finished the period with a putback basket from Jace Deeurso followed by a layup from Dallas Stone.

In the second quarter, the Mustangs put up 13 points, while the Marlins had their biggest production of the evening. Midway of the period, Babin hit a jump shot and then in the last three minutes, Will Rutland nailed a 3-pointer. Shoal River led 27-6 at the half.

At the start of the third quarter, Shoal’s Stone hit three consecutive 3s with Deeurso adding a basket for a 38-6 lead to start a running clock on the game. Destin’s Jamison Brundidge scored and then Shoal finished up with seven more points for a 45-8 go ahead.

In the final quarter, Shoal River put up nine and Destin one.

Shoal River had three players in double digits, Stone with 16 points, Chris Johns with 15 and Deeurso with 14.