Martin Brother's-Blue jumped out to an early lead in the first half with outside shooting from it's three senior guards 6-3 PG Jeff Horner, 6-2 WG Ben Jacobson, and 6-5 WG/WF Josh Powell.
Horner, Jacobson, and Powell combined to hit 9 three pointers in the first half helping Martin Brothers-Blue jump out to what seemed like a commanding 35-24 halftime lead.
However basketball is a game of two halves, and there was no giving up in the Minneapolis Patrick Henry Patriots. Coming out in the second half with a ferocious full court press, and behind the outside shooting of 6-3 WG Zerek Knight, Patrick Henry showed everyone in attendance why they deserved to be in the championship game.
Also helping lead the comeback was the tournament's Co-Most Outstanding Senior, 6-2 WG Terry Pettis, who opened up his game more in the second half. Patrick Henry's press started paying off as Pettis stole the ball at half court and took it in for a lay up. After a missed shot by Martin Brothers, Knight came down and hit one of his four three pointers, giving Patrick Henry it's first lead at 47-46 with 10 minutes to go in the game.
For the final 10 minutes of the game, it was like watching a prized championship fight, both teams taking the other teams best shot. Back and forth it would go.
With three minutes to go in the game, Patrick Henry seemed to have completed their comeback taking its largest lead in the game, 60-56. However, Tournament MVP, Horner was not about to go down without a fight.
Horner coming off a screen from 6-7 PF Greg Brunner, hit a huge three pointer at the top of the key trimming the lead to one, 60-59. A basket by Pettis on the other end increased the lead back to three at 62-59 with just over one minute to go in the game.
Martin Brothers-Blue turned the ball over on their next offensive possession, but Horner made a crucial steal right back and within a blink of an eye made an outstanding 30 foot pass to a cutting Brunner, who made a lay up and was fouled on the play with just 11 seconds to go in the game. Brunner made the free throw giving Martin Brothers-Blue a 64-62.
Having only two team fouls up to this point in the half, Martin Brothers-Blue was able to keep Patrick Henry from getting a good look at the basket. Finally with 3.5 seconds left in the game, a half court desperation shot by Pettis fell short and Martin Brothers-Blue came away with a hard fought 64-62 victory.
Brunner, who was also Co-Most Outstanding Senior, led four players in double figures for tournament champions Martin Brothers-Blue with 20 points and 7 rebounds. Horner finished with 13 points and 7 assists, Jacobson and Powell both finished with 12 points respectably.
Knight led the way for runner-up Patrick Henry with 18 points. Pettis ended the championship game with 13 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists. One of the Midwest top juniors 6-2 WG Lawrence McKenzie also chipped in 12 points. Along with Knight and Pettis, he was a big reason why Patrick Henry was in the championship game.
AUTO GLASS CENTER HOOPS IN THE HEARTLAND ALL TOURNAMENT TEAMS
MVP: Jeff Horner 6-2 SR Martin Brothers Blue
Co-Outstanding Seniors: Terry Pettis 6-2 SR Minneapolis Patrick Henry
Greg Brunner 6-7 SR Martin Brothers Blue
Outstanding Underclassmen: Ben Rand 6-6 JR TABA Team Nike
Jeff Horner 6-2 SR Martin Brothers Blue Greg Brunner 6-7 SR Martin Brothers Blue Terry Pettis 6-2 SR Minneapolis Patrick Henry Lawrence McKenzie 6-2 JR Minneapolis Patrick Henry James Ebert 6-2 SR Iowa City West Trojans Elliott Poole 6-7 SR Foundation for Student Athletes Jeff Halbert 6-5 SR Minnesota Select Tim Blackwell 6-3 JR Kansas City Hoopnets Josh Rhodes 6-6 SR West Valley Stars Ben Rand 6-6 JR TABA Team Nike David Kummer 6-5 JR Martin Brothers Red Tony Young 6-3 SR Schaumburg Saxons Zach Silverman 6-6 SR Pioneer Boosters Michael Bell 6-5 SR Hoops Iowa Keith Wooden 6-8 JR Kansas City Hoopnets