Demopolis shuts out Marbury to move to third round

MARBURY — Demopolis (14-2) took a while to find its rhythm Tuesday but rallied behind an Adam Brooker hat trick to beat Marbury 5-0 in the second round of the Class 4A-5A state playoffs.

“There’s a lot of different aspects that change from game to game and even more so in the playoffs from round to round,” Demopolis coach Bert Rice said. “I think it takes us playing. We get out there and get a feel of things and once we get a feel and we’re on, we’re pretty dang good. It does take a minute to find the groove. But I think that’s in any sport.”

The teams were scoreless until 25:02 to go in the first half when Brooker attacked from the left side and banged a shot inside the back post to put Demopolis up 1-0. The scored stayed there until 2:41 to play in the first half when Cristian Velez worked his way down the left side and put a shot in to stretch the lead to 2-0.

The game saw each team with numerous opportunities in the first half as Demopolis took 15 shots on goal and Marbury launched 11 of its own. James Woods proved extremely effective for the Tigers, saving nine shots on the night including a pair of fingertip efforts amid a cluttered box to preserve the shutout.

“James is one of the most consistent players I’ve ever had in any sport I’ve coached,” Rice said of his goalie. “He shows up ready to go every time and he got us out of a few sticky situations tonight. His arm and leg really helped us out too.”

Marbury keeper Bo Stinard was staunch in his own right, recording 13 saves on the night and keeping his team in the game until the waning minutes.

Brooker took advantage of a free kick with 36:36 to go in the contest when he boomed a shot from the right side to up the lead to 3-0.

“The crazy thing about soccer is there ain’t nothing you can do for a free kick. It’s the player versus the goalie and tonight Adam came up on the better end,” Rice said. “He isn’t a Division I player for nothing. He’s the best player I’ve seen in the state this year and we’ve watched quite a few teams play. He’s impressive and that shot was definitely impressive.”

With 23:19 to go, Brooker blasted what seemed like the proverbial death knell from 35 yards out when he went over the Marbury defense and into the top left corner for the 4-0 lead.

Zachary Chu beat the Marbury keeper left on a penalty kick with 6:39 to play to set the score at its final mark.

Demopolis took 25 shots in the game while Marbury took 17.

The win advances the Tigers to the third round Saturday when it will host Helena, who beat G.W. Carver-Birmingham 10-0 Tuesday.

“At this point, there are no bad teams. They’re going to be prepared. They’re going to be well-coached. They were No. 1 in the state for the better part of the season,” Rice said of Helena. “They played against really, really good competition and fared pretty well. I think we’re going to have to come out and play our best game and, if we do that, everything else will take care of itself.” currently lists that game with a 7 p.m. start time.


Adam Brooker – 42

Cristian Velez – 24

Zachary Chu – 17

Clay McVay – 6

Alex Maravilla – 6

Smit Patel – 3

Patrick Rosales – 2

Tyler Pipkins – 2

Joseph Barnes – 2

Ashley Dunn – 1

J.C. McVay – 1

Hugo Galvan – 1

Jaylen Wilson – 1

Matt Beckum – 1

Nick Helms – 1

James Woods – 1