By Gregg A. Sims
Washington Times Herald
The are comebacks, and then there are comebacks.
Class A No. 2 Barr-Reeve scored the final nine points to defeat Class 3A No.
6 Brownstown Central, 60-55, in the final game of the second round of the Graber Post Buildings Tournament Saturday.
The win places Barr-Reeve (9-0) in the 4:30 p.m. championship game today against Class A No. 7 North Daviess.
"I know it's just one game, but the toughness our guys showed against a very good team," said Barr-Reeve head coach Bryan Hughes. "I've coached a lot of games but this is one of the most memorable comebacks I can remember from a team. We beat an awfully good team, but it was also the way we won." Logan James led the 9-0 run in the final 2:34. James scored six of the points, Addison Wagler had two and Micah Bullock one, But it was Bullock who paced the Vikings with eight points in the fourth quarter for a game-high 18 points to 17 for Wagler, who added five in the final period.
"Micha did a really good job, and even though Logan was unsuccessful a couple of times - you know what, when you have a freshman running the team - he can go to the rim. Addison was really a workhorse. We needed it (Bullock and James). They were shutting down our offense and we needed people to take the ball to the basket. Those guys did a great job." The Vikings trailed throughout, the game was tied early at two, before two free throws from James gave Barr-Reeve its first lead at 56-55 with 51 seconds remaining.
It was not only the first lead for Barr-Reeve, but it came after the Vikings seemed to face more than one uphill climb.
Brownstown Central (6-1) went on a 13-0 run in a 2:30 segment of the first quarter for a 23-11 lead at the end of the period.
The lead escalated to 29-13 with 5:47 left in the half before Barr-Reeve cut the margin to 36-29 at the half.
"At halftime, my words were that we're OK," Hughes said. "We were seven down, but I thought they had shot the lights out and we were OK. The problem is when you play a team like this. They shut down so many of your sets. It gets to be a game of motion basketball and attacking the rim when you need to." The lead was bolstered by the Bulldogs hitting 6-13 from behind the arc with four different players finding the range in the first half.
"We played a very good team that came out of the gate hitting everything," Hughes said. "Our kids kept battling. A tremendous effort by our kids." James helped narrow the third-quarter margin to 36-32 with a hoop and a foul shot to open the scoring, but the Bulldogs went back into overdrive with the next seven points for a 43-32 lead with 4:04 remaining in the quarter.
The lead reached 48-34 with 2:44 remaining before the quarter ended with Brownstown on top, 50-41. But as Brownstown had set a torrid shooting pace through three quarters, the offensive touch started to wane in the fourth as the Vikings cut into the advantage.
Barr-Reeve held the Bulldogs to a field goal and three free throws in the fourth quarter, while scoring 19 points.
And while the quarter belonged to Barr-Reeve, Wagler put the final touches on a defensive gem with a late block as the Bulldogs attempted their own rally.
"Addison is a kid who just keeps playing," Hughes said. "That was a strong, physical team we played. I think our kids can play that way." Brownstown's offensive woes were characterized by Austin Snodgrass' turnover with just over a minute remaining.
Snodgrass, who scored 10 points while flashing good ability on both ends, simply lost the ball just past the 10-second line, and in a moment of seeming bewilderment, let the ball go into Barr-Reeve's end of the floor.
Snodgrass recovered, but there were three Vikings with him, and in the scramble for the ball, Snodgrass fouled James providing the Viking with the two free throws to give Barr-Reeve the 56-55 lead.
Snodgrass was named the tournament MVP at the Graber last winter, making the unusual turnover even more so.
James finished with 11 points for the third Viking in double figures.
Skylar Thompson scored 16 for Brownstown, Brett McCory scored 11, Chaz Schneider 11 and Snodgrass 10.
BROWNSTOWN CENTRAL 23 13 14 5 - 55
BARR-REEVE 11 18 12 19 - 60
Brownstown Central (55) - Collin DeHart 2 0-0 2 6, Chaz Schneider 5 0-0 2 11, Hayden Stuckwisch 0 0-0 1 0, Brett McCory 5 2-4 4 12, Austin Snodgrass 4
0-0 3 10, Chade Klinge 0 0-0 5 10, Skylar Thompson 5 3-4 2 16. Totals 21 5-8
Barr-Reeve (60) - Brandon Wagler 2 1-1 0 6, Myron Stoll 0 0-0 0 0, Micah Bullock 5 6-8 0 11, Heath Graber 0 2-2 2 2, Jon McMullen 0 0-0 0 0, Addison Wagler 6 5-5 4 17, Jacob Bledsoe 3 0-0 3 6. Totals 18 20-22 10 60.
3-point goals: Brownstown Central 8 (Thompson 3, DeHart 2, Snodgrass 2, Schneider), Barr-Reeve 4 (Bullock 2, Wagner, James).