A packed Mabee Fieldhouse at Avila University watched the 810 Varsity Shootout finale. (Photo: Darryl Woods, 810 Varsity)
In a battle of defending state champions from both sides of the state line, Grandview took home the heavyweight belt.
The defending Missouri Class 4 state champion Bulldogs outlasted two-time defending Kansas Class 6A champion Blue Valley Northwest, 56-51, in the final game of the 810 Varsity Shootout at Avila on Saturday night.
In front of a packed arena and energetic crowd, Grandview - No. 7 in the 810 Varsity Top 25 - looked to have run away from the top team in Kansas and No. 1 team in the 810 Varsity Top 25, leading 33-22 at halftime.
But the Huskies opened the second half with a six-point spurt with two Christian Braun buckets and a Michael Peake inside hoop to trim the lead to 33-28 just 90 seconds into the second half.
Grandview boosted the lead back to 43-35 with 3:35 left after a Jermaine Yarbough three-pointer. But Braun - who scored a game-high 28 points - scored on an inside bucket after a pass from Markell Hood, then Peake canned a baseline three-pointer to trail 43-42 at the quarter.
After trading buckets, senior Nathan Burger nailed a three with 4:44 remaining to give the Huskies their first lead of the game at 47-46.
It didn't last long.
After ensuing misses, Grandview called a timeout, eventually leading to a Deandre Sorrells three from the top of the key for a 49-47 edge with 2:43 left.
Braun, a 6-foot-5 senior who committed to Kansas this past fall, looked to tie the game after fouled on a drive. But missed both charity tosses. Chapman eventually tied the game at 40-49 with 1:43 left with an inside bucket.
But the G-Dogs answered promptly, when Reggie Morris Jr. nailed a three-pointer from the right wing, and a 52-49 lead with 1:34 left.
Braun missed a couple inside attempts, then after an attempted GHS stalling, Braun stole a pass, but a foul was called before a dunk. After getting the ball inbounds, Braun feinted a three-pointer in the corner, drove the baseline for a dunk, and a 52-51 deficit.
Liashwuon Boston was fouled, and made both free throws with :18.2 left for a 54-51 lead. Braun got a look for a long three-point attempt from the left wing with :06.7 left, but missed. Kamto Eze hit two free throws for the final margin.
The game was a mirror image of the faceoff in the 810 Varsity Showcase a year ago, with Grandview winning, 58-53. The two ended up finishing 1-2 in the final 810 Varsity Top 25 rankings.
Eze led four Bulldogs (6-1) who scored in double digits with 14. Peake finished with 9 points and 7 rebounds for Blue Valley Northwest (5-1), which play again in the 810 Varsity Showcase, Session I on January 5 vs Blue Springs South.
Grandview's Taj Manning goes up against BV Northwest's Michael Peake. (Photo: Darryl Woods, 810 Varsity)
BV Northwest's Christian Braun scored a game-high 28 points. (Photo: Darryl Woods, 810 Varsity)