By DYLAN MALONE
FORT WAYNE—Blackhawk Christian won the battle of the Braves on Tuesday night defending their home court on senior night against Bellmont, 45-40 in a non-conference game of round ball.
The 1A Braves were led down the stretch by their sophomore point guard Riley Reimschisel who scored on four free throws down the stretch and made a 15-foot jumper to keep pace ahead of Bellmont in the fourth quarter.
Bellmont found themselves down 33-26 to start the fourth quarter when back-up center, Ross Smith, made a nice post move on a reverse lay-in for two cutting the lead down to five. Smith earned the start with the ailing senior, Lance Vergara sitting the game out with soreness in his Achilles heel.
Parker Zeser connected on a difficult baseline drive cutting the lead to three points at 33-30 but Joey Morlan, another talented Blackhawk sophomore, nailed a 10-footer and on their next trip Reimschisel scored on a drive bolstering the lead back to seven points.
Coach John Baker praised the play of the Blackhawk point guard.
"Reimschisel made a lot things happen just by handling the ball quickly. He put us out of position all game and pressured us."
Smith drilled another post-score cutting the lead to five points again at 41-36 when Reimschisel took advantage of a sleepy Bellmont defense with under three minutes to go running the length of the floor on an inbounds play where a full-court pass caught him in stride and he was fouled making two freebies.
"He (Ross) made several solid post moves tonight adjusting to what the defense was giving him," noted a positive Baker after the game.
Knocking the lead back down to three, Bienz managed a tough inside lay-up, then Zeser hit a pair of free throws with :21 ticks to go. Bellmont was forced to foul again putting Reimschisel at the line for two more points and a five-point Blackhawk advantage. On the other end, Bellmont's last-attempt at a shot, Zeser's fade-away from the corner, was long and time expired in the scrum for the rebound.
Bellmont led 7-6 after the first quarter scoring the first five points of the game but struggling for the last four minutes netting only a Smith score on the inside in the second half of the first frame.
Blackhawk came out inspired in the second quarter after a Seth King three-pointer made it 10-6. The home team Braves went on an 8-0 run to lead 14-10. Zeser's three followed by a King free throw tied the game at 14-14 marking the final time the score was even, then Reimschisel made four straight points on his own giving Blackhawk the lead for good.
"It was their senior night. They played with some desire and emotion and we couldn't match it. They played with it the entire game," admitted Baker.
Bellmont trailed by five at the break, 24-19, and played even with the Blackhawk squad trailing by seven after three quarters.