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COOS BAY — It wasn’t pretty. It was a win.

That’s what mattered for Marshfield’s boys basketball team Friday night, as the Pirates used a 11-0- run in the fourth quarter to take control in a 55-49 win over visiting Junction City in the Sky-Em League opener for the two teams.

“We need to come out and play Marshfield basketball and not play the same as the other team,” Marshfield’s Cory Stover said after the close win.

The senior post added that the Pirates, who are favored to win the league title, can expect tough games from all their Sky-Em foes.

“I know if I was playing at a team like Junction City, I would be coming out hoping to knock off No. 1,” he said. “Everybody is just coming after us. We need to come out and do what we need to do every game.”

It took the Pirates a while to do that Friday night.

They started slow, as has been typical of recent games, then seemed to take control with a 9-0 run to end the first quarter capped by a 3-pointer from Jordy Miles for a 13-6 lead.

But Junction City battled back, briefly taking the lead in the second quarter before Marshfield went into the locker room up 27-25 at halftime.

The third quarter brought more of the same and the Tigers went in front with an 8-0 run sparked by a 3-pointer by Cameron Gibson. The Tigers led by as many as four points after back-to-back baskets by Johnathan Prescott and led by two heading to the fourth quarter. The lead was almost five but Gibson’s half-court shot at the buzzer rattled in and out off the rim.

Junction City got the first two points of the fourth quarter, but then Marshfield went on its big run. Grant Woolsey scored on a drive to the hoop and then Stover scored inside. When Jordy Miles hit a wide-open 3-pointer from the corner with 5:45 to go, Marshfield was back in front.

Woolsey and Stover added another hoop each and Marshfield led by six.

The Pirates were in front by at least four the rest of the way.

“I think we just knuckled down in the fourth quarter and made the extra pass and did what we needed to do,” said Stover, who finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Woolsey also scored 16 and Miles added 11 points and three assists.

Gibson hit four 3-pointers and finished with 16 points for the Tigers and Ryan Crowley added 11, including a pair of 3-pointers in the first half.

Marshfield coach Doug Miles said the Tigers gave the Pirates fits with their offense in the first half.

The Pirates also struggled with their shooting from the floor and, especially, the line, where they were just 13-for-26 (Junction City also was at 50 percent, shooting 9-for-18).

“We had good shooters missing free throws, too,” Doug Miles said.

The most important number, though, was 55-49.

“A win is a win,” Doug Miles said. “Sometimes you say ugly, ugly win.

“We were out of sorts. Hopefully, tomorrow we come out ready to play.”

That’s when the Pirates have a key nonleague game with Woodburn. The Pirates and Bulldogs tip off at 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Southwestern Oregon Community College.

Marshfield’s next Sky-Em League game is Tuesday at Cottage Grove. They play in Pirate Palace next when Siuslaw visits on Friday.

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Sports Editor John Gunther can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 241, or by email at john.gunther@theworldlink.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jguntherworld.

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Sports Editor