ELBING — The Berean Academy boys’ basketball team was a little bit lucky when it needed to be and a little bit good when it needed to be, resulting in a 58-55 win over top-ranked (Class 2A, KBCA) and defending state champion Sterling Friday in Elbing. T.J. Guhr hit the game winner for the Warriors with 11.1 seconds remaining in regulation. Berean added a pair of free throw after that. “We snuck one out,” Berean coach Lewis Wiebe said. “We still have an awful lot to learn. Getting (Austin) Maxwell out of the game with foul trouble was big. They had one player with an injury who couldn’t shoot. ... They have a great team and will do very good last year. They lost four or five seniors from last year. They return three or four guys. We played well for as inexperienced as we are. We shot the ball well from the outside. They were hitting well inside the paint.” Maxwell scored 21 points for Sterling, before fouling out late in the game. Kirk Engelland added 11 points. Berean was led by Dallas Wiebe with 16 points Loren Pearce with 13 and Kameron Wiebe with 10. Guhr and Clark Busenitz each added nine points. Sterling jumped out 11-2, but the Warriors replied with a 14-2 run that ended on a Dallas Wiebe trey at the buzzer. “We didn’t do what we were supposed to do at the beginning of the game,” Lewis Wiebe said. “These guys are a little inexperienced. We’ve got to learn.” Berean led by as many as seven early in the second quarter, but Sterling started hitting shots as the Warriors went cold. A Jake Jaderson trey with 3:08 left in the half tied the game. With 2:14 left in the half, Jaderson put Sterling up with two free throws. Berean ended the half on a 6-2 run. A T.J. Guhr jumper with 49 seconds left put the Warriors ahead 30-29. Berean led by as many as seven early in the third quarter. Again, the Warriors went cold while Sterling started to hit shots to pull within one. Berean led by two at the end of the period, 42-40. Sterling opened the fourth quarter on a 6-2 run, scoring all three baskets on layups. Berean took the lead on a Dallas Wiebe layup with 2:35 left in regulation. Kirk Engelland countered with a three-point play 31 seconds later. After a missed 3-point attempt, Maxwell hit a layup with 1:04 left in regulation. Berean got back within two on a Pierce jumper with 34.9 seconds left in regulation. After a missed layup by Sterling, Guhr was fouled on the rebound, hitting one of two free throws. After Guhr’s layup, Engelland missed an open layup on the other end. “We got away with a mistake there,” Lewis Wiebe said. “We shouldn’t have. We’ll have to learn from that.” Clark Busenitz was fouled with 2.1 seconds remaining in regulation, hitting both free throws. Sterling turned the ball over on the inbounds. Berean plays Belle Plaine Thursday and Eureka Friday at the Marion Classic. “We have a week to practice and get better,” Lewis Wiebe said.
STERLING (0-1) — Jaderson 1 (1) 4-4 4, 9; Galyon 2 0-1 2, 4; Bagby 2 (1) 0-1 1, 7; Engelland 5 1-3 4, 11; Buckman 1 1-2 1, 3; Maxwell 10 1-2 5, 21; Proffitt 0 0-0 0, 0; TOTALS 21 (2) 7-13 17, 55. BEREAN ACADEMY (1-0) — T.Busenitz 0 1-2 1, 1; Guhr 3 3-5 0, 9; C.Busenitz 2 (1) 2-2 2, 9; D.Wiebe 4 (2) 2-2 1, 16; Pearce 5 3-6 4, 13; Cook 0 0-0 1, 0; K.Wiebe 5 0-0 2, 10; Broadie 0 0-0 2, 0; TOTALS 19 (3) 11-17 18, 58. Sterling 15 14 11 15 —55 Berean Acad. 16 14 12 16 —58