October 15, 2011
Marshall comes up big in win
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Arguably the biggest game in Ohio on Friday night was the Greater Miami Conference showdown between Middletown and Cincinnati Sycamore. Both teams entered the game among the top four in playoff points in the always brutal Region 4. In the end, star junior Jalin Marshall made just enough big plays, mostly through the air, to give the Middies a convincing 21-3 win on Senior Night.
"We just played hard and came out here and did it for the seniors," said Marshall. "We've had a heck of a year so far and I love these dudes. I've been playing with them since I was little so we just had to come out here and get a win for them."
After a lightning delay pushed kickoff back nearly 40 minutes, Sycamore drew first blood, marching down the field on the opening drive of the game and knocking home a short field goal. That was all the offense the Aves could muster, however as the Middletown defense controlled things for most of the game.
"The defense was great," Marshall said. "I couldn't have asked for a better defensive effort."
After having a 41-yard touchdown run called back in the first quarter, Marshall would eventually find the end zone from nine yards out with just under three minutes left in the first half. Middletown would get the ball back before the break and with just 21 seconds left in the half, Marshall found receiver Lance Johnson down the sideline for a 40-yard score. The deep ball was perfectly placed by Marshall.
"My boy Lance, I just said 'go get it, I'm gonna throw it to you'," Marshall said. "He went and got it. I have faith in him and he has faith in me and that's all I can ask for. He had a heck of a game."
Marshall would put the final nail in the coffin with a 12-yard strike to Johnson on a slant pattern midway through the fourth quarter. Much of the second half belonged to senior running back E.J. Junior who rushed for 115 yards on 21 carries. Middletown's offensive line widened their splits to alarming lengths, thinning out Sycamore's defensive front.
"We just game-planned against what their gameplan was," he said. "We just tried to widen them out and run as best as we could. If they came up, we went deep, and it worked out just fine."
In total, Marshall finished the game 5-of-8 passing for 100 yards and two touchdowns along with 65 yards rushing and a touchdown. Marshall confirmed after the game that he still intends to visit Tennessee, Notre Dame, and Ohio State, in order, over the next three weekends.
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