Burton joins Grenadier lore amid Men’s Basketball falling to Top-Ranked Georgetown

David Burton surpasses 1,000 Point mark despite Grenadiers falling just short against #1 Tigers, moving to 0-4 start

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Brandon Miniard

Senior David Burton maneuvers around Oakland City’s Nathaniel Schmittler (left) and Beau Hefner en route to a layup during the Grenadiers’ home opener against the Oakes on Dec. 14. Burton had a strong 2020-2021 campaign despite the Grenadiers playing only 10 games, averaging a team-high 17.2 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, earning him All-RSC First Team Honors.

Brandon Miniard, Sports Editor

The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on the schedule for the IU Southeast Men’s Basketball team. After a 72-61 loss to Huntington University to conclude the Ness Bros. Hall of Fame Classic on Nov. 7, the Grenadiers’ were hit with one cancellation after another. They have yet to play at the Activities Building this season, having originally been scheduled to open the home portion of their schedule against Bethel University on Nov. 10.

After over a month without playing a proper contest against another team, the Grenadiers caught a break with a schedule update by traveling to Georgetown College on Wednesday, Dec. 9. The main issue with this addition is the fact that the Tigers sat as the top-ranked team in NAIA, as well as the Grenadiers being only 1-13 all-time against the Tigers. Despite the prestigious top ranking, along with the Grenadiers’ month-long hiatus, the ensuing contest remained mostly close throughout. In the end, the Tigers lived up to their ranking with an 82-72 victory.

“We know the history with us and Georgetown, so we wanted to go in and compete,” Head Coach Wiley Brown said. “Whether we won or lost that game, we wanted to play hard and as a team.”

Defense dominated shortly after tipoff, with neither side able to connect until almost three minutes in, when Tigers’ Forward Kyran Jones converted a three-point play. The Grenadiers quickly answered with a 12-2 run, led by threes from Glenn Hill and Anthony Wales Jr. Another triple from Jocobi Hendricks expanded the lead to 18-12 with 10:45 left in the first half.

From there, the Tigers roared back with a 19-3 surge, initiated by three consecutive triples from Jones and Guard Derrin Boyd, jumping out to a 31-21 lead. The Grenadiers responded with a 13-6 run of their own, led by back-to-back triples from Jared Osborne, to cut the deficit to 37-33 at halftime.

The second half started on a historic note for the Grenadiers, notably Senior Wing David Burton. With a field goal almost two minutes into the period, Burton became the 32nd Grenadier in program history to eclipse the 1,000 career point mark. Burton’s accomplishment was also the first since teammates Demetrius Stanton, Joe Jackson, and Jamie Johnson all accomplished the feat during the 2017-18 campaign, during Burton’s freshman year. After the loss against Huntington, Burton spent the monthlong hiatus at 993 career points, but Burton expressed little worry over such a detail.

Getting my 1000th point feels good, though I would much rather it come with a win,” he said. “Having to wait over a month to get there wasn’t that big of a deal to me because I felt like I was going to get some time, just didn’t know when.”

Aside from Burton’s historic basket, the second half started out rough for the Grenadier defense. The Tigers utilized a high-scoring assault including three consecutive buckets from Boyd and threes from Jones, Chad Ohmer, and Jaquay Wales to jump out to a 70-52 advantage with 6:35 left.

Despite not playing for over a month, the Grenadiers weren’t done just yet, as Wales Jr. converted a three-point play, followed by a Burton basket. Wales Jr. and Burton followed with triples sandwiched between a steal by Cameron Simmons and a basket by Hendricks. The 13-0 surge cut the deficit to five with 3:38 remaining. That was all the Grenadiers could muster, however, as free throws from Boyd and Wales, along with a triple from Brodricks Jones sealed the game.

Boyd led the Tigers with a game-high 28 points, scoring 14 in each half, along with seven rebounds and assists. Derrin Jones dominated the backboard with 15 rebounds to go along with his 27 points. Burton led the Grenadiers with a double-double, notching 25 points and 10 rebounds. Wales Jr. followed with 19 points and two steals.

The Grenadiers were protective of the ball, committing only six turnovers as opposed to the Tigers’ 16 miscues. Despite the additional scoring opportunities for the Grenadiers, the Tigers were more efficient from the field, shooting 47.4%, while the Grenadiers shot 35.7%. The Tigers also commanded the backboard, outrebounding the Grenadiers 50-31.

“Going in, we knew we were going to be outmatched rebounding-wise,” Brown said. “Regardless, I was very happy with the way they played, which was very hard.

For Burton, nicknamed “DB” by his teammates, the night was a mixture of satisfaction from reaching the 1,000 point mark and disappointment of losing a close contest. Serving in a bench capacity throughout his tenure at Trinity High School in Louisville, Burton did not come close to reaching the 1,000 point plateau. Upon being recruited by Brown, Burton was motivated by this second chance upon first stepping inside the Activities Building.

As a freshman, Burton was quiet, composed, and driven, mostly unfazed by Brown’s firey, no-nonsense style of coaching. Four years later, Burton’s silent, determined work ethic has blossomed, transformed into a player leading by example for the mostly young Grenadiers.

“DB has been a great asset to this program, a great student and team-player,” Brown said before glancing at his son, Freshman Caleb Brown. “I hope my son becomes somewhere close like DB one day.”

The loss puts the Grenadiers at 0-4, their worst four-game start since 2015-16 when they started 1-3. They returned to action by finally partaking in their home opener on Saturday, Deb. 12, over a month later than originally scheduled. They welcomed River States Conference newcomer Oakland City, chopping down the Oaks 103-65.

IUS (0-4): David Burton 25, Anthony Wales Jr. 19, Jocobi Hendricks 9, Jared Osborne 6, Glenn Hill 6, Trey Hourigan 4, John Kinnard Jr. 2, Cameron Simmons 1

Georgetown (4-1): Derrin Boyd 28, Kyran Jones 27, Brodricks Jones 12, Jaquay Wales 10, Chad Ohmer 3, Seth Johnson 2