Washington’s Cullen Arnold was able to shoot a potential game-winning three-pointer from the right baseline just before the horn sounded, but his jumper caught the rim and the ball bounded away off the glass.
The Cougars took 29-22 and 31-24 leads in the first 3:35 of the fourth quarter before Washington started its comeback.
The Hatchets were able to tie the game at 33 with 2:04 to play on two Arnold free throws. Those two free throws followed Arnold making one of two after North Daviess’ Wes Lengacher was called for an intentional foul on an Arnold breakaway, resulting from a Cougar turnover.
Arnold made one of two on the intentional, and then converted the two foul shots on the ensuing possession.
A North Daviess turnover gave Andy Garland bonus free throws with 59 seconds left, but his first missed and Tyler Hostetter grabbed the rebound setting up the final North Daviess possession.
While the miss could have given the Hatchets a lead, Washington converted 6 of 13 attempts for the game from the line. Arnold made 6 of 10 in the final quarter. Jake Bedwell missed two chances in the second period.
The Cougars were not proficient at the line either. North Daviess made two of six. Wagler had both of those while Kelby Byer missed three and Crays misfired on his lone attempt.
Both teams were playing opening doubleheaders in the still early season. North Daviess had topped Shoals the previous night, while Washington fell at Evansville Central.
The appearance of Crays was questionable, as the senior continues his recovery from season-ending knee surgery from the previous January. The Cougars had said Crays may rest on doubleheader nights.
Dalrymple said the Cougars decided to play Crays Friday and see how he felt Saturday.
“What we had originally planned with Shoals being a sectional opponent, we thought about sitting him (Crays) Friday and playing him here,” Dalrymple said. “We starting thinking about it - that would be silly - what if he played Friday and felt really good Saturday. We would have wasted him. It’s the only time we get good looks at each other is when we play. If he can play, he’s going to play.”