The New Years ball recently dropped at midnight to mark the start of 2020 along with the dawn of a new decade, but two nights later it was Kiowa Jones, whose ball dropped through the hoop at Washington’s celestial Hatchet House in the closing seconds of the game that sent Class A, #8 ranked Loogootee home with a gut-wrenching defeat. WHS jumped out to 15-11 lead after one period, but the Lions bounced back to outscore Washington 13-6 in the second to carry a 24-21 lead into the locker room at halftime. Both teams tallied 11 points apiece in the third as LHS maintained a three-point, 35-32 lead heading into the final quarter. Coupled with their inability to score and ill-timed turnovers Loogootee saw its lead evaporate as the Hatchets eventually tied the game at 37-37, before completing a 12-4 run that put Gene Miller’s squad ahead 44-39. But the Lions would score the next five points to tie the game at 44-44. Once again, LHS did a superb job defensively on one of SW Indiana’s best guards in Grant Niehaus, holding the senior to just 13 points. Expecting Niehaus to take the final shot, it was the aforementioned Kiowa Jones who got the call for Washington (8-1, 1-0 in Big 8), hitting on a trifecta from the right wing with 2.0 seconds left to give the Class 3A, #14 ranked Hatchets a 47-44 victory. Loogootee (8-3, 2-0 in BCC) was led in scoring by Jordan Wildman who had 15 points, 3 rebounds and 4 assists. He was followed by Silas Bauer who scored 10 points, while pulling down 8 rebounds.
From a local standpoint, Friday’s victory gave Washington head coach, Gene Miller his 704th career victory. Miller’s 704-334 (.679) overall record places him 3rd in the state among active head coaches. He currently ranks 8th on the all-time wins list and is one of only 10 head coaches in the history of Indiana High School Basketball to win 700 or more games.
* Jordan Wildman (15 pts, 3 rebs, 4 asts)
* Silas Bauer (10 pts, 8 rebs)
* Jalen Wildman (6 pts, 4 rebs)
* Peyton Bledsoe (5 pts, 4 rebs)
* Landon Harder (4 pts)
* Nathaniel Hart (4pts)