Benter, Brownstown too much for Olympians

Fans packed the Orange Pit Thursday night to see one of the top players and pure shooters in the state.

Brownstown Central junior and Purdue commit Jack Benter put on a performance for the couple thousand in attendance to put up a game-high 43 points and hit nine 3-pointers to give the Class 2A No. 6 Braves a 92-47 boys basketball win over Columbus East.

“You’ve got to tip your hat off. I think they’re a good team. I think they’re a team that has the skill and the way they play hard to win a state championship,” East coach Brent Chitty said. “You’ve got to tip your hat to them. They’re just that good.”

Benter showed fans Thursday night that he’s likely the best player in the southern Indiana since Romeo Langford five years ago. He’s likely a front runner for Mr. Basketball next year.

“Jack guards, he scores, he rebounds, he dishes the ball. He’s an all-around quality player,” Chitty said. “I’ve been blessed in some regards to coach against Damon (Bailey) and Romeo, who are really good players. When you start talking about Romeo and Damon, I believe Jack Benter deserves to be in that conversation.

“I think more importantly than what coach Chitty thinks is that coach (Matt) Painter at Purdue, who is the No. 1-ranked team in college basketball, thinks he is good enough to be his first signee in that class,” Chitty added. “I think coach Painter probably sees many, many more basketball players than coach Chitty sees.”

Benter proved tough for the Olympians (1-14) to guard all night. He drained shot after shot with ease, and even when East tightened up the defense against Benter, he still was able to knock down the shots.

The Olympians trailed 19-7 after the first quarter, but Benter knocked down two perimeter baskets during a 15-0 run to increase the lead to 34-9. He’d knock down a 3-pointer before the halftime buzzer sounded to put them ahead 39-15. In the second half, the Braves triggered the running clock early in the fourth quarter.

Ethan Bumbalough

For East, Ben Sylva finished with 18 points and Ethan Bumbalough had 17 points.

“I thought Ethan Bumbalough for us tonight played his guts out. We’re really pleased with his progress. Ben Sylva had the incredible task of trying to slow (Benter) down,” Chitty said. “We’ve got to drive and then kick it. When you’re hot, hit shots. We’ve struggled shooting all year. Let’s create that good shot by playing inside-out, but you got to knock it down.”

Brownstown Central 92, Columbus East 47


Columbus East;7;8;21;11;—;47

Brownstown Central (14-4): Jack Benter 15 4-4 43, Parker Hehman 3 0-0 8, Carson Darlage 1 3-4 5, Chace Coomer 3 0-0 9, Colby Hall 3 2-2 10, Adam Stahl 2 0-0 4, Jakob Arthur 5 0-0 13. Totals: 32 11-12 92.

Columbus East (1-14): Ben Sylva 8 1-1 18, Zane Moravec 1 0-0 2, Ethan Bumbalough 7 3-4 17, Pete Coriden 0 1-2 1, Carter Patterson 2 0-1 4, Jake Gilbert 1 0-0 3, Elum VanEst 1 0-0 2, Mason Reeves 0 0-0 0, Jackson Fischvogt 0 0-0 0, Kadin Lobdell 0 0-0 0. Totals: 20 5-8 47

3-point goals: Brownstown Central 17 (Benter 9, Arthur 3, Coomer 3, Hehman 2); Columbus East 2 (Sylva, Gilbert).