In the first half of Tuesday night's home opener with Clarinda, the Spoofhound boys basketball team dabbled in domination.
From the opening minutes of the third quarter on, they figured out how to sustain it.
After having a nine-point lead cut to two at the half, Maryville followed through on its earlier attempt to blow the game open and ran off with a 58-38 win at MHS Gymnasium.
The Hounds went on a 23-4 spurt that spanned into the fourth quarter and built as much as a 23-point lead.
They held Clarinda to 14 second half points and one three after the Cardinals made four in the first half. Maryville (3-1) scored 32 second half points, including 18 in the third quarter.
This was Maryville's second straight win following its only loss to Winnetonka.
"We changed our defense a little bit and took away more of the stuff they were getting in the paint," said Maryville head boys basketball coach Mike Kuwitzky. "We had to stop their driving and get out and contest those three's. Offensively, we had to move the ball better and not just settle for three's, try to get the ball inside more. I think those were the two biggest adjustments."
Senior guard Jonathan Baker was the catalyst for Maryville's second half surge, scoring 13 of his game-high 18 points in the third quarter and eight in a row during one stretch. He hit a three-pointer to open the half and then scored his next five baskets on powerful drives to the rack in transition.
The last one staked Maryville to a 43-30 lead. Maryville finished the third quarter up by 14.
"As a team, I thought we ran transition pretty well tonight," said Kuwitzky. "We got some transition points from several people, and I think that's part of our game. We can move the ball up the floor especially out of steals and as a team."
Junior forward Trent Nally took over in the fourth quarter, converting four shots inside against Clarinda's worn down 2-3 zone. His last one completed a 10-1 run and gave Maryville its biggest lead of 54-31 with better than four minutes left.
Clarinda never got any closer than 16 points from then on.
"We were looking to pound it no matter who was in there," said Kuwitzky. "That zone has got holes in it. Last year, they beat us up at Clarinda because we just settled for three point shots and didn't go inside hardly at all. Our goal tonight was to get the ball inside. Even if we didn't score, we had to get it in there to make them collapse to open up the outside a little bit."
Page 2 of 2 - All five of Maryville's starters contributed at least six points and three were in double-figures.
Tyler Kenkel was second on the team with 14 points. Nally had 11 points and nine came in the second half.
Treyton Burch chipped in seven points. Ty Hilsabeck added six.
Dakota Woods led Clarinda with 15 points. Noah Bix followed up with eight points.
Clarinda beat Maryville a year ago at home, but returns just one player from a team that reached the Final Four in Iowa.
The Hounds never trailed Clarinda's new-look team and were tied for only one juncture.
Maryville took Clarinda out of its offensive comfort zone in the first quarter, forcing six turnovers. The Hounds went up 13-7 on a fast break layup by Kenkel and finished the quarter ahead 15-10.
In the second quarter, Clarinda closed a seven-point gap down to 17-15 on a three by Woods.
A three by Burch and baskets by Nally and Kenkel gave Maryville its largest first half lead of 24-15.
With Baker on the bench, Clarinda answered with nine straight points off three Maryville turnovers and tied the game at 24 on a nifty finish underneath the basket by Jett Kitwick.
A close bank shot by Nally gave Maryville a 26-24 halftime lead.
"We were hurrying," said Kuwitzky. "I felt like we were playing right into their hands. We had too many turnovers, trying to force things. We had to correct that. We were just being careless with it. We got back to our game plan and then we were fine."
Maryville dressed only nine players for the game, used just seven until the final few seconds and six played the bulk of the minutes. Junior center Jackson Morrison and senior guard Boston Schneider are no longer with the team after suiting up in Savannah.
Varsity sophomores Brody McMahon and Mitchell Worthingon also didn't dress out, but still sat with the team. They were replaced by junior Zach Carmichael, sophomore Danner Jacobsen and sophomore Tyler Coleman.
"We have some people that aren't going to be suiting up for a while," said Kuwitzky. "We're going to have to adjust and make due with what we have."
Maryville's next game is Thursday night at Benton.
The Hounds won all three meetings against the Cardinals last year, the final one on a last-second three by Payton Scarbrough.