PREP BOYS BASKETBALL: Chupp's late '3' lifts Bethany Christian over Wawasee

Jan. 24—GOSHEN — Bethany Christian led for less than 30 seconds Tuesday night.

That's all they needed to pick up their sixth-straight win.

After trailing the entire game, Bruins junior Tyson Chupp sank a '3' with 28.8 seconds to go to put his team ahead, 50-49. Bethany then survived three more Wawasee possessions in the final moments to hang on for the one-point win at home.

"I just went and told (Chupp) that it's fun when your teammates create for you and you can get a wide-open look instead of having to create for them," Bethany Christian coach Daniel Mast said. "So, that was kind of fun to see. Justin (Hochstedler) made the right play, kicked it out (to Jayden Schlabach), who made the extra pass. (Chupp) doesn't get many shots that open."

The '3' gave Chupp a game-high 19 points. He also had eight rebounds and four assists in the contest.

The Warriors called a timeout with 23.2 seconds left in the game. After a shot attempt from junior Collin Ziebarth was blocked, it led to a scramble for the ball. Sophomore Myles Everingham corralled it and astutely called timeout with 9.7 seconds left, allowing Wawasee to regroup.

Out of the break, Ziebarth took the inbounds pass and drove straight to the basket. He had a clean look on a layup, but the ball rolled off the rim. Another loose ball ensued, this time with Bethany junior James Lind grabbing it eventually. Lind was fouled by Ziebarth with 1.3 seconds to go, sending him to the free throw line on the other end of the court.

Lind missed both free throw attempts, with the second one allowing Wawasee to grab the rebound and call timeout with 0.9 seconds showing on the clock. Needing a miracle, a long-distanced pass found its way into the hands of Everingham, who got a nearly-clean look off from halfcourt. The shot bounced off the side of the rim, though, securing the win for the Bruins.

It's the first win for Bethany Christian (11-4) over Wawasee (5-10) in program history, having lost its previous seven outings against the Warriors.

It was a painful loss for Wawasee, who led for almost the entire game. They built the lead to as many as 12 midway through the third quarter as well, as a jumper from Everingham made it a 39-27 advantage for the visitors with 3:58 left in the third period.

Bethany would then close the third quarter on an 11-1 run to make it just a two-point lead, 40-38, for Wawasee going into the fourth. A '3' from junior Carter Miller kickstarted the run, with an old-fashioned three-point play from Chupp finishing it off with 12.2 seconds left in the frame.

"We just started getting out of what had gotten us to that point," said Wawasee coach Jon Everingham of what went wrong for his team. "We play disciplined basketball and we take good shots, and we got away from that. We started playing undisciplined. They had a couple of good (plays); you have to give coach Mast credit: he ran a couple of good sets coming out of timeouts."

The margin stayed between five and two points for the first four minutes of the fourth quarter. Bethany first cut the deficit to one at 46-45 courtesy of a made shot from Lind. After two free throws from Everingham, the Bruins made two of their own courtesy of sophomore Jacoby Reinhardt.

Everingham then split a pair of free throws with 49.7 seconds remaining, setting up Chupp to be the hero for the home team.

Reinhardt finished with 11 points and eight rebounds in the game, providing a spark with his defense and energy as well.

"He plays a huge role for us," said Mast of Reinhardt. "He's that athletic wing player. He covers a lot of ground with his length. ... It was definitely his best defensive performance of the year."

Ziebarth was the catalyst for Wawasee early, scoring 14 of his team's 17 first-quarter points. He would cool off from there, though, managing just four points across the final three quarters. He'd finish 7-of-17 shooting for the game, with six of those makes coming in the first eight minutes.

The Warriors led, 17-12, after the first quarter. A competitive second quarter ended with Wawasee up four, 26-22, at halftime.

Ziebarth finished with a team-high 18 points. Myles Everingham added 11, senior Collin Roberson nine, sophomore Maddux Everingham five and sophomore Weston Hoffert three. Wawasee returns to Northern Lakes Conference play Friday at Concord.

"We're at the point in the season where you try to find the positives, and that's where we've been," Jon Everingham said. "Yes, it does kind of stink that we dropped this one, but we knew it was going to be tough. ... We were in control of that game. We should've kept control when we were up 12, but just made some undisciplined plays."

Also scoring for the Bruins was nine points from Miller on three made '3's', six points from junior Justin Hochstedler, three from junior Jesse Bontrager and two from Lind.

The win improves Bethany Christian to 11-4 on the season. They've won nine of their last 10 games, which has garnered them some state-wide recognition. Before Tuesday's game, the new Indiana high school boys basketball AP poll came out, with the Bruins claiming the No. 9 ranking in Class 1A.

Bethany looks to keep up its winning ways Thursday against their rival, Elkhart Christian, at home.

"It's definitely an honor that people are looking at what we're doing and recognizing it; I think that's the importance of it," said Mast of being ranked in the top 10. "As far as where we're at in the state, I hope we can prove we're in the top 10 once the tournament comes around."

Austin Hough can be reached at austin.hough@goshennews.com or at 574-538-2360. Follow him on Twitter at @AustinHoughTGN.