Brownstown boys basketball begins play at home versus Salem


The Brownstown Central boys basketball team had to wait a bit longer to begin its 2021-22 season, but the wait is now over as the Braves open their season tonight at home against Salem.

When practice started a couple of weeks ago, head coach Dave Benter was encouraged by the effort given by his team on the floor.

“We’ve had a lot of energy,” Benter said. “I’ve been real pleased with our effort and energy. Obviously, our timing needs some work. We’ve got to fine-tune a lot of stuff. Timing on offense needs to get better, but that just takes time and reps.”

Another positive for the Braves is how well they have rebounded the ball in practice.

No one on Brownstown’s varsity roster is listed shorter than 6 feet tall. Five players — Jack Benter, Carson Darlage, Bryce Neal, Aidan Schroer and Adam Stahl — are all listed at 6-foot-4 or taller.

“I’m hoping that’s one our strengths this year,” Benter said of rebounding. “We’ve actually got one of the biggest teams top to bottom that I’ve coached here at Brownstown.”

Benter is in his 24th year at Brownstown and has a record of 403-153. Last season, the Braves went 14-7, including 7-2 in the Mid-Southern Conference.

Brownstown has a lot of experience coming back, and even the three sophomores on the varsity roster (Benter, Stahl and Parker Hehman) all saw some action last season.

“We’ve got a lot of experience returning from last year,” coach Benter said. “We’re still going to have some youth, but experience shouldn’t be an issue. We’re going to be able to score the ball better than last year. I think there were times last year where we really struggled to score the ball. We didn’t have many points returning going into last year, and we’ve got almost all our points returning this year.”

The remainder of the Braves varsity roster is all juniors and seniors. One player who has yet to play for Brownstown is Jakob Arthur, who was ineligible last season.

Arthur, a junior, is now eligible to get on the court for the Braves this season.

“That’ll be a good addition for us,” Benter said.

Brownstown will likely be led again by Jack Benter, who led the team in scoring last season as a freshman with 18.3 points per game.

In the weeks leading up to tonight’s contest, communication has been a focal point in practice.

“Communication has been a big thing we’ve really been focusing on,” coach Benter said. “I didn’t think we were very good at communicating last year. We’ve really been trying to focus on that. I told them I don’t care if you’re a senior, a junior, a sophomore, we need guys who are going to communicate, and that will cover up some of the mistakes we make on the floor.”

Benter also believes the Braves need to become more efficient on offense, stating they wasted too many possessions last year.

“Those are two of the big areas we are really focused on, and like I said, we’ve got a chance to be a good rebounding team,” Benter said. “But we’ve got to actually see those things once the season starts.”

That will be tonight at approximately 7:30 p.m. against Salem at home. JV will tip off before that at 6 p.m.

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