VASJ played one of its best games of the season, but fell in double overtime to Bentonville West, 85-82.
Jaden Hameed scored 37 points and Jonah Waag added 22 and 17 rebounds in the loss for the Vikings, who rallied from a double-digit halftime deficit to force the extra sessions.
“Sometimes when you lose you don’t realize how great of a basketball game you played in. I had several people from NEOSHO tell me that might be the best game they’ve ever watched at this tourney. That is saying something and we played in a classic with them last year (we won in overtime).
“Greg White is as good of a high school coach as I’ve ever coached against. I feel like we had better talent, but told our kids ‘You guys will have to pick me up because this guy is a better coach than me and it’s not really close.’
“As good as his Bailey kid was (40 points) I thought his son Evan made the difference in the game with his decision making.
“I was so proud of how our guys battled in the 2nd half. Samson Foster gave us his best minutes of the year and Sean Johnson (our only senior) hit some big shots for us. …. It doesn’t get any easier as we play Mitchell tomorrow at noon, they have more state titles than any school in Missouri.”
VASJ takes a 4-4 record into day 2 in Missouri.