The Christian Academy boys’ basketball team beat host Borden 44-41 on Friday night, breaking an 11-game losing string to the Braves since the Warriors’ last victory in 2003.
“This is the biggest win we’ve had in my three years,” coach Steve Kerberg said. “This does give us some confidence. It’s so hard to break through sometimes. It’s so hard to get your kids to believe, because they’ve been so good for several years now. It’s hard to beat them. … It’s a hard mental hurdle to get over and finally beat the champ.”
The Braves (10-2), the defending Class A state champions, led 32-30 and had possession to start the fourth quarter. Brian McGee held the ball at midcourt as nearly three minutes slipped off the clock, then the Warriors (9-3) came out and forced the action.
Kerberg wasn’t upset at all about Borden’s stall tactics.
“We thought if the game was shortened, we’d have a good chance to win,” he said. “The worst thing we could do was come out, chase them and give up easy baskets.”
Still, Zack Gilliam scored on a putback to end that long possession with 5:16 left, and the Braves led 34-30. Then James Martin, who tallied 12 points for the Warriors, drilled a 3-pointer from the left corner to cut it to one with 4:56 left.
That field goal was the first of four for the Warriors during the fourth quarter, when they didn’t miss.
“It feels great,” Martin said of beating Borden. “We’ve been working so hard in the offseason and so hard in practice. … If feels great to all these guys who have never beaten Borden.”
With the score tied at 36, Christian Academy’s Aaron Eldridge missed a free throw, but 6-foot-7 teammate Shelby Rose converted the putback with1:48 left. The visitors never trailed again.
“That was the biggest play of the game,” Borden coach Doc Nash said.
Nic Reed led the Warriors with 16 points. For Borden, Garrett Vick battled Christian Academy’s big guys for 14 points, and Caleb Hart added 11, including three 3-pointers.
Even though there’s plenty of basketball to played, Nash said the Braves will remember this loss and “learn from it.”
“We had good shots; they just go in,” he said. “Their size bothered us. … Obviously, we have a bunch of things to work on. That’s good.”
– Martin 12, Eldridge 7, Reed 16, Rose 5, Chalfant 4.Christian Academy (9-3)
– McGee 3, Vollstedt 4, Vick 14, Gillam 8, Hart 11.Borden (10-2)
– Martin 2, McGee 1, Hart 3.3-point goals