ELNORA — After a big victory on Saturday at the Evansville Bosse Winter Classic, Barr-Reeve had exactly 48 hours to prepare for a perennially strong Brownstown Central program on Monday night at the Old National Bank Holiday Classic at North Daviess.
The opening quarter saw a back and forth affair between the two teams, and Brownstown led 11-9 midway through the first. The Vikings, however, ended the quarter on a 9-0 spurt, and a Brycen Graber dish to Keegan O’Neill gave Barr-Reeve an 18-11 advantage at the end of one.
Barr-Reeve used a Graber triple to quickly move the led to double figures at 21-11 to open the second quarter. A late steal and layup by the Braves cut the deficit to 28-19, but Hagen Knepp got free on an inbounds set just ahead of the halftime horn to give the Vikings a 30-19 lead at halftime. Knepp, a sophomore, ended the first half with 18 points to lead the Vikes.
The Vikings looked to throw the knockout punch in the third quarter, and quickly started the second half on a 7-0 run to move in front 39-21. Brownstown rallied to cut the deficit to 41-29, but a three point play by O’Neill gave the Vikings a 44-29 advantage going into the final quarter.
Any thought of a fourth quarter push for Brownstown was quickly extinguished, as the pair of Knepp and O’Neill pushed the Vikings lead to as big as 29 at 65-36. A late triple by the Braves accounted for the final margin at 65-39, and moved the Vikes to 6-0 on the season.
“I really thought we were good on our break tonight. We had some really good looks, and even had some we didn’t make. We really did a good job of making an extra pass to get wide open shots,” said Viking coach Josh Thompson.
Knepp led the Viking attack with a game high 28 points, and was followed by O’Neill with 22, and Graber with 13.
Barr-Reeve advances to the semi-final round on Friday night where they will face 2A No. 3 Blackford in the 6 p.m. game. Blackford features the states leading scorer in Luke Brown who comes into the tournament averaging over 35 points a contest. North Daviess and Loogootee will play in the 7:30 p.m. contest at the Cougar Den.