For The Tribune
After the Brownstown Central basketball team had a high-quality practice Monday, Braves coach Dave Benter was hoping that sharpness and intensity would carry over to Tuesday night’s game against Austin.
Benter had a lot to be pleased about as the Braves jumped on top 23-0 after 5½ minutes of play and coasted to a 90-33 Mid-Southern Conference win.
“We came out really sharp,” Benter said as the Braves improved their home record to 6-0 and their MSC mark to 5-0. “That’s two games in a row that we’ve been really sharp.
“They came out in a triangle-and-two and our other guys that weren’t being guarded really stepped up and made some shots and made some plays, and I really liked our defensive energy early in the game.
“We’ve talked about we need to be having our best practices at this time of the year, and playing our best, and (Monday) night I thought our first 30 minutes was as well as we’ve practiced all year. That’s encouraging.”
Carson Lambring and Cody Waskom were hot from the outside in the early going. Lambring made three 3-pointers in the first period, while Waskom had two threes and a deuce during that time.
A rebound basket by Cam Shoemaker pushed the Braves’ lead to 23-0 with 2:30 left in the opening eight minutes.
The Eagles missed their first six shots from the floor and committed five turnovers before Trevor McIntosh finally scored for the Eagles, and the Braves were on top 28-3 when the first quarter ended.
Waskom stayed hot in the second quarter with three more baskets, Matthew Nierman made a pair of 3-pointers, and Ty Maxie scored five points to help the Braves to a 51-13 lead at the half.
The Braves shot 17 of 39 in the first half and 36 of 67 for the night, while the Eagles were 13 of 37 from the floor overall.
Waskom added four baskets and Shoemaker three in the third period when the Braves outscored the Eagles 24-14 to take a 75-27 lead into the fourth period.
Waskom topped all players with 23 points, Lambring finished with 13, Nierman made four 3-pointers for 12 points, and Shoemaker and Maxie scored 10 each.
This marks the second time the Braves have scored at least 90 points this season, and the first time they have had five players in double figures.
“I told them never get too high after a win or too low after a loss,” Benter said. “We talked about that tonight and we need to make sure that we’re staying grounded and staying focused because we’ve got a big weekend ahead of us.”
Austin scored back-to-back baskets only once during the night, and the Braves finished with just four turnovers.
Benter said he feels like the Braves are playing at a high level.
“It’s this time of year that there are no excuses now,” he said. “We’re a veteran ball club. Some of our football guys got their legs now.
“There’s never a good loss, but I’m hoping our guys, after the Tipton game realized that we had some things to work on. Since then we’ve really seemed to come together. Our ball movement has been outstanding.
“We’ve moved the ball outstanding in practice. We talked that tonight, that good basketball teams move the basketball, reverse the basketball and make long recoveries. We’ve got a lot of guys that can score, but if you stand and don’t move the basketball it’s tough to get in a situation where you can score, and our guys have done a really nice job of that.”
The Braves had 19 assists against Austin with Zach McCory having six and Jacoby Shade tallying four.
Trevor McIntosh topped the Eagles (2-11, 1-4 MSC) with 13 points.
The Braves (13-1) will travel to Charlestown on Friday and to Corydon Central on Saturday for MSC games.