PITSBURG – In a defensive, grind-it-out game, Brookville outlasted Arcanum for a 40-29 win to advance to the Jet Holiday Tournament championship game.
Arcanum got off to a quick start with Carter Gray draining two triples and Andrew Baker adding a fielder to put the Trojans on top 8-2 at the 1:04 mark in the first quarter.
But there was a lid on the basket for the Trojans going forward and they would go five minutes without scoring.
Brookville went on a 9-0 run to take a 13-8 lead before Evan Atchley sank two free throws, but the Blue Devils maintained their lead heading into the break, 15-14.
“They (Brookville) defended us well and the way I probably would probably defend us, if I had to play us, and they let our bigs go one on one, and we didn’t make enough shots. I think we were 2-of-11 in the first half, and that’s difficult to overcome,” Arcanum boys basketball coach Marcus Bixler said.
In the third quarter Arcanum took care of the ball and showed patience running its offense and got some good looks with Gray scoring 7 points in the quarter.
After Gray tied the game at 21 on a triple, Atchley drove to the basket and converted a nice up-and-under reverse layup to regain the lead for the Trojans, 23-21.
Brookville, though, finished the third quarter strong on a couple of triples by Wade Turner to go back on top 29-25 heading in the final stanza.
“We just had some hiccups on both ends of the floor especially on the offensive end of the floor. We weren’t in the right set or organized the way we needed to be and didn’t have the ability to make two or three ball reversals when we needed it at critical times there at the end of the third quarter, and we took some tough shots. The next thing you know were down 4 points going into the fourth quarter,” Bixler said.
The Trojans’ shooting woes continued and Brookville would run away with it late in the fourth quarter for a 40-29 win.
“I think we did some good things defensively. It was a grind-it-out game … but they have a couple of really good guards who are hard to guard. Once they had that lead in the fourth quarter it was tough to come back,” Bixler said.
“We didn’t rebound the ball well tonight at all, giving up 17 offensive rebounds, and when you’re in a game that tight you have to rebound, they just killed us on the glass,” Bixler concluded.
Arcanum was led by Gray with 17 points. The Trojans will play in the consolation game of the Jet Holiday Tournament against Mississinawa Valley who fell to Franklin Monroe 74-50.
Score by quarters
AR … 08 … 06 … 11 … 04 – 29
BR ….04 … 11 … 14 … 15 – 40
Arcanum – Carter Gray 17, Evan Atchley 4, Andrew Baker 3, Lane Byrne 2, Grant Delk 3
Totals – 3-6-8/10 – 29
Brookville – Jacob Gudorf 10, Justin Bland 2, Weston Turner 4, AJ Denlinger 6, Jesse McGriff 2, Wade Turner 16 – Totals – 5-9-7/11 – 40