It's tournament week for Maryville boys basketball, as the Spoofhounds will travel 72.7 miles three times in four days for the Cameron Tournament. The Spoofhounds' first tournament game was against Chillicothe Jan. 24 in Cameron, Missouri.
The Hornets came out red-hot, taking a 9-2 lead in the first quarter, but the second quarter was a different story. The ’Hounds took control in the second due to an 11-0 scoring run, fueled by a 3-point barrage from junior guard Derek Quinlin, who made four 3-pointers in the quarter. Their scoring run tied the game 20-20 going into halftime.
Coach Matt Stoecklein said after the first quarter, he told the Spoofhounds they need to get back to what they know how to do.
“Move the ball, attack the paint, kick it out, finish at the rim — all that good stuff,” Stoecklein said. “They responded, and they started doing a really good job. That helped them, and Derek Quinlin had four 3’s in the second quarter to kind of get us back on track.”
The second half was tightly contested as neither team could pull away. The Spoofhounds and Hornets found themselves tied at 39 at the end of the fourth quarter, which meant extra time put on the clock.
Maryville finished strong, outscoring Chillicothe 15-7 in the extra period, winning 54-46 in overtime. Stoecklein said he was proud of how his team came back and started 1-0 in the Cameron Tournament.
“If we would have lost that game, it would’ve been a tough game to lose, especially to think you’re going to come away with the ‘W,’” Stoecklein said. “To lose that game, it would have been tough for us to walk into another game tomorrow night against a very big school, Smithville — a tough school with one of the better players in the area. So, having a 1-0 start is huge for morale.”
Maryville will travel back to Cameron Jan. 25 for a contest against Smithville (11-6), which will not be done in time for publication. At last year's Cameron Tournament, the Warriors beat the Spoofhounds 56-41 Jan. 27, 2022.
Smithville averages 60.4 points per game, but the Warriors' defense allows 51.9 points per game. The ’Hounds score 63.3 points per contest while allowing 54.1.
Senior forward Keaton Stone said the key to scoring against tough defenses is taking open looks and taking good shots.
“We’ve definitely struggled with really taking good looks, open 3’s, kicking out to 3’s,” Stone said. “I mean some tough shots have definitely been taken. I think that’s the biggest thing if we just take good shots and make them, then I feel like we won’t have any problems.”
Maryville will get a day of rest before hitting the road to Cameron for the third time in four days. The Spoofhounds will end tournament play against Cameron, the tournament host, Jan. 27 in Cameron, Missouri.
The Dragons average fewer points per game — 54.4 — than Maryville and allow more points per game — 56.6. The Spoofhounds have won the last 12 meetings between the Dragons. The last time the Dragons won was Feb. 16, 2015, in 38-34 fashion in Cameron, Missouri.
Stoecklein said it's a challenge playing a team that has a home-court advantage.
“It’s always tough, especially when it’s your third game in four days. That’ll be tough,” Stoecklein said. “But, we’ve played in Cameron a lot whether home, away or a tournament. We’re pretty familiar with that gym. Feels like sometimes we have more away games in certain gyms than we do in our own home gym.”
After the tournament, Maryville will hit the road again, but not to Cameron. The Spoofhounds will head out-of-state to take on Bishop Ward (Kansas) in Kansas City, Kansas. The trip to Kansas will be the last of seven consecutive games on the road.