DALE BARGER/Advocate photo
Senior Shade Brubaker was sharp as his nickname “Shade The Blade” as the sharpshooter set the school record with nine treys while scoring 34 points in win over National Trail Friday night.
PITSBURG – Tri-Village took on National Trail Friday night for the second time this year, having won their first match-up 76-29. Teams are always evaluating if they are getting better as the season progresses, and in the rematch there were signs of improvement for the Patriots.
Improvement one was on defense as the Tri-Village boys basketball team held National Trail to just 20 points for the game to record an 81-20 league win.
“We were pretty good defensively; our guys are really buying into playing strong defense. I’ve heard them saying in the locker room it’s starts and ends with defense,” Tri-Village coach Josh Sagester said.
While the defense shined tonight, there was an even brighter light that illuminated the offense in the form of Shade Brubaker.
The game started with a bang on a fast break jam by Andrew Willcox off a feed from Brubaker to set the stage for bigger things to come.
It was the sharp shooting of Brubaker doing the most damage as he connected on all five of his 3-point attempts in the opening frame to help the Patriots jump out to a 26-6 lead.
The Patriots continued to stymie the Trailblazers with their defense holding them to just five points in the second frame and 11 for the first half.
Colton Linkous led T-V in the second quarter with eight points, and Brubaker ended the first half scoring 20 points as the Patriots held a 46-11 advantage.
If the defense was good in the first half, it was stellar in the third period as Tri-Village held Trail to just two points. Brubaker connected on two more treys as the Patriots expanded their lead to 50 points, 63-13.
Brubaker tied the school record with his eighth triple on the night to start the final stanza and at that point the question on the minds of Tri-Village fans, would they witness a record-breaking night?
By now the Trailblazers were well aware of where Brubaker was on the floor and getting a good look from behind the arch was proving to be much more difficult.
With time dwindling down and two defenders lunging at Brubaker, he let go with the answer; it was a high arching shot with perfect rotation that said “Hello, basket” to record his ninth trifecta on the night to become the school’s single game record holder for 3-pointers in a game.
The previous record was shared by three players – Drew Moore, Justin Shumaker and Brandon Falknor.
“Tonight was a special night for Shade Brubaker to break the school record for threes. I think Shade would agree the team shares this record as they recognized he had the hot hand and tried to find him,” Sagester said. “This really was Shade’s night, and I couldn’t be happier for him.”
Shade Brubaker, who scored just two points in the first game against National Trail, had 34 points Friday. Colton Linkous scored 17 points and Kyle Pipenger 10.
The Patriots dominated the boards with Tyler Cook pulling down 14 on the night.
Speaking of defense, the Patriots registered 19-team steals with Matt Werner picking eight of them while also dishing out seven dimes for the win.
Tri-Village recorded an 81-20 win to raise its record to 12-0 overall and 6-0 in the conference.
In junior varsity action the Patriots got 13 points from Mason McCabe in a 35-32 win over National Trail.
Both teams are back in action at home on Tuesday night in a key Cross County Conference match-up with defending league champion Miami East.