Smyser’s record-setting 3-point barrage carries Palmyra to victory in Lenzini Tournament opener


Palmyra sophomore Marty Smyser III | Submitted photo

PALMYRA, Mo. — Marty Smyser III was as succinct as he was accurate.

After breaking the Palmyra boys basketball team’s single-game school record with 11 3-pointers in Monday night’s 79-34 victory over Highland in the opening round of the 80th annual Tony Lenzini Tournament, the sophomore guard summed up just how big the basket looked with only one word.

“Huge,” Smyser said.

Maybe as big as it ever has, which enabled Smyser to settle in to the right rhythm.

“I was locked in for sure,” he said.

The top-seeded Panthers snared the lead in the first quarter, outscoring the Cougars 17-4 with Smyser hitting one 3-pointer coming off the bench. He added two more in the second quarter and the Palmyra lead grew to 35-14.

In the third quarter, Smyser caught fire. He scored 20 of the Panthers’ 32 points in the frame, making six 3-pointers. He added two more in the fourth quarter to set the new record.

“It’s great, but I couldn’t have done it without my teammates,” said Smyser, who finished with 35 points. “I got some great players around me, and I’m proud to be a Panther.”

It was the unselfishness of his teammates and the Panthers’ ability to move the ball that set Smyser up for success.

“I took the opportunities and just let it fly,” Smyser said.

The Panthers also received 10 points from Bronson Juette and eight points from Bear Bock in advancing to Wednesday’s semifinals against fourth-seeded Canton, which beat Mark Twain 67-47 behind 21 points from Evan Burbridge, 15 points from Preston Brewer and 14 points from Kyle Frazier.

Smyser said the way Palmyra dismantled Highland was widely important.

“It definitely gave us some confidence for the upcoming games,” he said.

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