Gustin caps PH career as Hoosiers All-Star

Apr. 27—KNIGHTSTOWN — The postseason honors for Pendleton Heights senior Josiah Gustin have been extensive. He was named All-Hoosier Heritage Conference and First Team All-Area as well as Honorable Mention All-State by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association and was selected by Hoosier Basketball Magazine for its annual Top 60 workout.

There was just one task left as an Arabian, which was to play in the 19th annual Hoosiers Reunion All-Star Classic on Saturday at the Hoosier Gym in Knightstown and cap his brilliant career at Pendleton Heights.

Gustin actually raised an eyebrow as the realization set in his high-school career officially ended Saturday.

"It's really bittersweet," he said. "It's sad, but it's also kind of fun."

The Classic is played at the location made famous by the movie "Hoosiers" and features all-stars from around the state in a girls and boys doubleheader, one team wearing the familiar Hickory Huskers uniforms from the movie and the other donning the blue jerseys of the rival Terhune Tigers.

After the Hickory girls team — which included Miss Basketball Chloe Spreen of Bedford-North Lawrence — routed the Terhune girls 124-82, it was Gustin's turn to take the court as a member of the Tigers.

While Terhune's roster included Mr. Basketball Flory Bidunga of Kokomo, Aaron Fine of Noblesville, Keenan Garner of Fishers and Isaac Andrews of Wapahani as teammates for Gustin, Hickory prevailed 131-129.

Gustin finished with 10 points and two rebounds while Bidunga and Garner repeatedly shook the rims with thunderous dunks, electrifying the capacity crowd and bringing smiles to the faces of players from both teams.

Four of Gustin's points were on dunks that came about as a result of assists from Bidunga. The Kansas commit and McDonald's All-American found Gustin in transition in the first quarter before dishing to the PH senior for a baseline drive later in the game.

Playing with Bidunga proved to be one of the more memorable aspects of this experience for Gustin.

"I didn't expect him to pass to me, so it surprised me a little. But I just took it and went in for the dunk. It was nice," he said. "He was just super nice and an all-around good person. I enjoyed playing with him."

It was also a memorable career for Gustin at PH.

After averaging 14.9 points and 6.9 rebounds this season, Gustin also became the 10th player in program history to score 1,000 career points, finishing with 1,066.

It is a career — which included a Madison County title as a freshman — his coach wishes could last just one more season.

"I'll start off with saying that I wish I had one more year to coach him and his teammates," PH coach Joe Buck said "It was a great experience. He worked extremely hard as all his teammates did. It was a lot of fun."

The 6-foot-7 swingman will now take his diverse skillset to Marian. His ability to score inside and outside, rebound and handle the basketball should make him a strong candidate to contribute immediately.

"They want me to be, like, everything. A shooter, driving, defense, and I'm really excited," he said.

Buck believes the Knights got a steal in nabbing Gustin.

"He's a huge catch," Buck said. "With his athleticism and his upside, he could be a great player for Marian before it's over."

All in all, it was a fun experience for Gustin to play in the historic gymnasium adorned with signage from the movie.

"It was really cool, especially seeing all the stuff on the walls," he said.

Gustin will study business at Marian.

Contact Rob Hunt at or 765-640-4886.