Led by the 19 points from senior Gavin Hess and 11 from classmate Jordan Brickley, the Beech Grove Hornets defeated the host Greencastle Tiger Cubs 52-37 Saturday morning in a regional semifinal at Greencastle High School’s McAnally Center.
Tied at 8-8 early in the second quarter, the Hornets went on a 13-0 run to take command of this contest. Three-point field goals by Brickley and Josh Copenhaver, a three-point play on a bucket and foul shot by junior Jajuan Allison, plus baskets by senior Griffin Wade and Hess put the Tiger Cubs in a hole that they never completely got out of, even though they trimmed Beech Grove’s lead to five on two separate occasions (23-18 in the third quarter and 35-30 in the final period).
Hess led the Hornets (18-7) with six rebounds and two blocked shots while Brickley had a team-leading five assists to go with two steals.
Senior Gavin Bollman led Greencastle (21-5) with 19 points (matching Hess for game-high honors) and 10 rebounds.
Beech Grove’s win was its first in a regional game since March 5, 1966, when the Hornets knocked off top-ranked Indianapolis Howe 51-50 in a semifinal at Hinkle Fieldhouse. It was also the first time in the 100-year history of the basketball program that the Hornets had faced a school from Putnam County.
The Hornets took on Crispus Attucks (19-8), an 88-61 victor over Owen Valley, in Saturday night’s championship game at 8 p.m.