Braves reach semifinals

For the Tribune

ELNORA

The Brownstown Central boys basketball team dominated Clay City from the start to roll to a 77-45 win in the opening round of the Graber Post Buildings Classic at North Daviess High School on Tuesday night.

Braves coach Dave Benter called it the best performance of the season from his team.

“That was a pretty good basketball team that we just beat,” Benter said. “We played the most complete game we’ve played all year, by far. We shot the ball well. Finally, defensively we were in gaps, we guarded people, we kept the ball out of the lane. We contested jump shots, and we finished by rebounding.”

The Eels held a 5-3 lead after three minutes. The Braves then went on an 18-0 run by putting up 3-pointers as Collin DeHart hit two, Cole Borden and Jacoby Shade knocked down one each, and Zach McCory’s added his second of the game, followed by his 3-point play which made it a 21-5 game with 1:07 left in the opening period.

The Braves held a 24-10 lead entering the second period and were on top 25-14 when they went on a 13-0

run as Shade hit two more 3-pointers. Matt Nierman hit another trey, and Borden and DeHart added baskets inside.

“We had one turnover at the half,” Benter said. “Offensively, I (saw) about three possessions the whole first half where I didn’t think we were real efficient. Our ball movement, our cutting, our screens, our timing (was good). We took good shots and we made them (13 of 21 in the half). We played awfully well the first half.”

The Braves shot 10 for 15 from 3-point range in the first half and finished 13 for 18 for the game.

Shade opened the second half with his fourth 3-pointer of the night and finished strong with nine points in the fourth quarter on 4-for-4 shooting, topping all players with 22 points. McCory finished with 16 points, Cam Shoemaker had 11, and Cody Waskom had 10.

Brigham Booe topped the Eels (5-2) with 12 points, and Trevor Singer added 11.

The Braves were 26 for 40 from the floor, while Clay City shot 13 for 40.

The Braves held a 26-15 advantage in rebounds, with Shade topping the Braves with nine.

Brownstown (6-1) will face Rock Creek Academy (8-2) at 6 p.m. Friday after the Lions defeated Pike Central 64-51 in the early game Tuesday.

Rock Creek will be one of the tallest opponents the Braves will face all year, with a player standing 6-foot-6 and two athletes at 6-7 filling the front line.

“They’re a completely different type of team,” Benter said. “Except for (6-1 Will) Brown, they’re an inside-type team. This (Clay City) was more of a perimeter, five guard-type team.”

The height the Braves

will face will test their rebounding.

“We’re going to have our work cut out for us,” Benter said. “We’re going to have to come out and rebound the ball, take care of the ball and move the ball. We’ve got to be efficient and make the extra pass.”

Author photo
Arv Koontz is a sports correspondent for The (Seymour) Tribune.