MURPHYSBORO — On a night where nobody from Murphysboro could make much of anything from the field, Jaron Gaston delivered a tremendous performance from downtown in the second half.
Gaston buried four of his five 3-pointers in the final 10 minutes of the game and helped the Red Devils erase a 10-point deficit on their way to a 46-39 victory over Marion in prep basketball.
Justin Saddoris hit a turnaround jump shot to give the Wildcats a 29-19 lead with 2:53 left in the third quarter. That’s when everything changed. The Red Devils proceeded to outscore Marion 27-10 the rest of the way.
Gaston knocked down two straight shots from beyond arc, and Corbin Guthman sank a triple as well. The Red Devils sliced their deficit from 10 to just one in two minutes.
“He was absolutely huge for us,” Murphysboro coach Daryl Murphy said of Gaston. “He was getting to the rack on those fast breaks in the first half, and we couldn’t get anything to fall. We were stuck on 15 points forever.”
Murphysboro (18-6) went more than eight minutes without a point during a stretch in the first half. Meanwhile, Marion took advantage.
Terrell Henderson made three buckets in the paint, and Jackson Connor added another as the Wildcats opened up a six-point lead halfway through the third quarter.
Marion was playing good basketball, but went cold from the field over the final 10 minutes of action.
The Wildcats still had their chances, and Murphysboro’s Guthman faced a key one-and-one from the foul line with his team holding just a three-point lead with 20 seconds to play.
Guthman sank both shots, and Murphysboro held on for the win.
“Our subs were big tonight, especially considering Jeremy House wasn’t scoring much,” Murphy said. “We didn’t have our best production out of our best player tonight. This is a great team win. Guthman hit the biggest shot of his career. We got a lot of good things out of a lot of people tonight.”
Saddoris led Marion (15-10) with 11 points. Henderson and Connor added 10 points apiece. Gaston led all scorers with 17 points for Murphysboro. House contributed 12 points, five of which came in the final 38 seconds of the game.