LOOGOOTEE — North Daviess senior Alex Wittmer hadn’t hit a shot all night, but that wasn’t going to stop him from helping his team to an important win.
North Daviess (4-4) defeated Loogootee (3-8) 49-45 Friday night at Jack Butcher Arena to snap a three-game losing streak.
Entering the fourth quarter, the Cougars held a slim 36-34 lead after outscoring the Lions 15-8 in the third quarter. Loogootee’s Ryan Howell’s fifth 3-pointer of the night put the Lions up 37-36 early in the final quarter. Kelby Byrer put the Cougars ahead 38-37 on the next possession. Wittmer added two free throws to give North Daviess a three-point edge and Wittmer his first two points of the night.
The Lions and Cougars traded baskets, but Howell’s sixth and final 3-pointer of the night tied the game with 4:17 to play in regulation. Wittmer made layups on consecutive possessions to give North Daviess a lead it would not relinquish. Wittmer’s two made baskets came after his missed his first six shot attempts on the night and all three 3-pointers.
“This is a team game and Alex (Wittmer) had a tough night as teams are going to really focus on him and for him to step up like he did in the fourth quarter was great to see,” said North Daviess coach Brent Dalrymple. “I thought all of our kids really stepped up at different times.”
After Wittmer gave North Daviess a four-point lead, Loogootee’s Hayden Bell missed two free throws and Zach Moore’s layup gave the Cougars a 48-42 lead with two minutes to play. The final two minutes, however, was a mess for both teams. Loogootee missed five of its eight free throw attempts to sink any chance of a comeback bid. The Lions were just 4-of-12 from the charity stripe on the night.