Luke Brown Flips the Script for Blackford Basketball
HARTFORD CITY, Ind. (NewsLink) –Hartford City, Indiana, home of Blackford High School, is a community driven by agriculture and industrial development. Beneath the surface of what goes on in Hartford City, a town of just over 6,000 people, is the Blackford Boys Basketball team.
The past two seasons have been ones for the ages for Blackford. After several losing seasons, including a stretch of over sixty straight losses, and games with less than one hundred tickets sold, a player and his coach have helped turn the program around.
Blackford sophomore Luke Brown leads the state in scoring. The Bruins are 14-4 this season, and nearly every game at Bruin Gym reaches maximum capacity - between 3,500-4,000. Thousands of Blackford fans have poured into opposing teams’ facilities, forcing pre-sales at almost every game throughout the year.
In the February 8 contest against conference rival Oak Hill, Brown scored the thousandth point of his career. In just his 32nd game, Brown reached this milestone faster than anyone in Indiana high school basketball history.
“I was just really happy, you know I’ve always wanted to break 1,000 since I was a little kid, but I didn’t know it was going to be my sophomore year,” Brown said. “It’s truly a blessing, just trying to give God the glory through everything I do.”
Brown, who leads the state in scoring with 36.9 points per game, does it all on the court. Brown is averaging 6.8 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 2.8 steals per game, keeping the opposing teams on its toes.
Coach Jerry Hoover expressed confidence in Brown, as he believed Brown would get the record against Oak Hill.
“He’s averaging 36, and I forget what he had to have, but we thought that this would probably be the game he’d break the record,” Hoover said.
Many elements must come together for a team to be successful. Although strong play on both ends of the floor are prevalent with this Blackford team, the unification of the community in support of the Bruins is something that Brown and the rest of team cherish.
“At home it’s a big deal because we’ve got the community behind us. Not only does it help us, but it could also degrade the other team,” said Brown.
Coach Hoover expressed his gratitude toward the community for supporting his team, as it’s something unlike anything he’s seen before.
“Blackford seems to be one of the few schools in the state that at this point is supporting their team like they are,” Hoover said.
The Bruins currently sit at 14-4 and are ranked 152nd in Indiana. After the 93-59 win over Daleville, Luke Brown set the Bruin gym record with 54 points, just one point shy of his career high that was set earlier this season against Elwood.
The Bruins hit the road to take on Southern Wells Friday at 7:30 P.M. and aim to win their fifteenth game of the season and push towards the post-season where they aim to win their first sectional championship since 1991.