By Staff Reports
The Washington Times-Herald
---- — ELLETTSVILLE – Washington saw a five-point lead with less than a minute to play go by the wayside as Edgewood defeated the Hatchets 40-39 on Friday.
Washington (0-2) led 39-34 with :50 to play in the game following a pair of free throws from Austin Ghirardelli. But Clayton Settle of Edgewood (1-2) drew a foul and hit both free throws with :42 left to cut the Hatchet lead to two.
A Hatchet turnover – one of seven Washington miscues in the fourth quarter – quickly gave the ball back to the Mustangs. Edgewood took quick advantage as Settle was fouled on a made basket with :35 on the clock. Settle, who led the Mustangs with 17 points on the night, made the charity toss to knot the score at 39-39.
Following a Hatchet timeout, Washington worked for the last shot of regulation, but Colton Garland, who led the Hatchets with 17 points, was stripped of the ball at the top of the key with :04 to play. Garland raced back on defense and prevented Edgewood’s Tommy Black from hitting the game winning layup but fouled Black with three tenths of a second on the clock. Following a WHS timeout, Black hit the first free throw to seal the win for Edgewood.
For Washington coach Gene Miiller, it was a game that his team should have won.
“It’s very frustrating. We just didn’t take care of the basketball. We had five guards out there and we had 17 turnovers, 12 in the second half,” said Miiller. “We just don’t play very strong with the ball. We did a good job on the boards (23-16 rebounding advantage), we just didn’t do much offensively all night.
“We just have to get better offensively, were just not clicking right now offensively. We have to find someone who can hit shots and get him shots,” said Miiller. “We let this one get away from us. We definitely should have won. For 30 minutes we played well enough to win.”
After Colton Garland, Tyler Stoll and Ghirardelli added six points apiece for WHS, with Andy Garland and Matthew Stephens netting four points each. Black finished with eight points for the Mustangs.
Washington started strong then hit a long scoring drought before rebounding to take a lead into the locker room at halftime. The Hatchets took a quick 6-0 lead to open the game, including a free throw from Colton Garland, a pair of charity tosses from Andy Garland, and a 3-pointer from Colton Garland.
That trey, however, would be the final points of the first quarter for the Hatchets as Edgewood reeled off 10 straight points to take a 10-6 lead after eight minutes of play. The Mustangs’ lead reached 12-6 before a basket by Ghirardelli broke Hatchet skid early in the second quarter. But a three from Clayton Settle pushed the Edgewood lead to seven points at 15-8 following Ghirardelli’s bucket.
Washington, though, found its mark on offense and outscored the Mustangs 14-5 the rest of the second quarter to forge a 22-20 halftime lead. Colton Garland dialed long distance twice more during the run, while Stoll added a pair of buckets and a free throw and Matthew Sparks contributed a basket.
Washington also fronted after three quarters of play 26-24.
Washington dropped the JV contest 43-41