From the opening tip, Barr-Reeve sophomore forward Addison Wagler had all his moves working for him, and the North Daviess defense was powerless to stop him.
The Class A No. 3 Vikings (14-1) defeated the Class A No. 5 Cougars (11-4) for the second time in 20 days Saturday evening at the Cougar Den to win the Buggy Bowl. Barr-Reeve defeated North Daviess on New Year’s Eve 44-42 in double overtime to win the Graber Post Classic.
Tonight’s game was a designated Coaches vs. Cancer game, sponsored by North Daviess Schools Relay for Life to raise funds for the American Cancer Society.
Wagler began the game by missing his first two shots, but that was as much resistance as he faced all night. The sophomore made four of his next five shots to finish the first quarter with eight points, as Barr-Reeve led 10-8 after the first eight minutes of play.
Wagler’s fifth field goal of the night pushed the lead to 14-11, but North Daviess senior Wes Lengacher’s two free throws cut the lead to 14-13. The Vikings responded with a 10-2 run to take a 24-15 lead into halftime.
The Barr-Reeve defense held North Daviess senior Nick Crays without a point through the first two quarters. North Daviess coach Brent Dalrymple said Crays is battling multiple injuries, and he did the best he could, as he managed just seven points.
“(Nick) Crays sprained his ankle last night (against Linton),” Dalrymple said. “He threw up a half-court shot at the end of the first half, and he sprained his ankle. The guts and determination if you would have seen it when we taped it before the game, I love the kid. He pulled something in warmups. He tried to gut it out, but he had nothing.”
With Crays not anywhere near 100 percent healthy, the Vikings jumped on the Cougars quickly in the third quarter, as they extended their lead to 32-18. The Cougars fought back, and pulled to within 36-30, but couldn’t get two open 3-point attempts to drop. Barr-Reeve entered the fourth quarter with a 37-30 lead, and the Cougars ran out of gas in the 11-point defeat.
“We withstood that, and answered the bell a couple times,” Hughes said. “I said all along I like this team, and now you see why I like this team. I just think the guys come off the bench, and maybe they don’t get a lot of minutes, but what they did and how they contributed was really good. From top to bottom we played well.”
After 14 points in the first half, Wagler added 12 more in the second half to give him 26 for the game, as he accounted for more than half of Barr-Reeve’s points.
“I’m not sure I’ve ever witnessed a sophomore put on that type of offensive performance,” said Barr-Reeve coach Bryan Hughes. “He’s just a kid that’s strong, he’s got quick feet and he was just feeling it tonight. Give the other guys credit for getting him the ball, and getting him space where he could operate.”
After the game, Dalrymple acknowledged that getting a healthy lineup on the floor might be the most important thing for the Cougars at this point. This marked the third game this season that Crays battled an injury that North Daviess registered a loss.
“We got to get healthy,” Dalrymple said. “I as a coach have got to make sure we get healthy, because until we get healthy, we can’t win the sectional. Whatever we have to do to get that done, it needs to be happen over the next six weeks.”
BARR-REEVE 10 14 13 13 -- 50
NORTH DAVIESS 8 7 15 9 -- 39
James 1 2-4 3 4, Bullock 3 5-6 1 13, Bledsoe 2 0-0 3 4, A. Wagler 12 2-3 1 26, B. Wagler 1 0-0 1 3. Totals 19 9-13 9 50.
North Daviess (39)
Crays 2 3-3 3 7, Wittmer 1 1-2 0 3, Lengacher 3 4-4 3 11, A. Wagler 1 2-2 4 5, Byrer 3 2-2 3 8, Hostetter 1 0-0 0 2, Cook 1 0-0 0 3. Totals 11 12-14 13 39.
3-point goals: Barr-Reeve 3 (Bullock 2, B. Wagler), North Daviess 3 (Lengacher, A. Wagler, Cook)
JV Score: Barr-Reeve 43, North Daviess 24. Leading Scorers: D. Cook 16 (ND), L. Lengacher 12 (BR)