VINCENNES — VINCENNES – A magnificent season came to a sudden and sad end for the Washington Lady Hatchets as Southridge eliminated the state’s ninth-ranked team 41-40 in semifinal action of Sectional 31 at Alice Arena on Saturday.
The end came for Washington (17-4) at the hands of Aubrey Main, who was fouled in the act of shooting with .9 seconds left. Following a Lady Hatchet timeout, Main hit the first shot to break the 40-40 tie. After another WHS timeout, Main missed her second shot, which was rebounded by Washington’s Cheyenne Jones. Jones immediately called for a timeout, stopping the clock at .6 seconds.
After the timeout, Washington worked the ball to Ally Hunsinger near midcourt. But Hunsinger, who was surrounded by three Southridge (15-5) players upon catching the inbounds pass, was unable to get a good look at the basket as her shot fell well short of the goal as the horn sounded.
The loss was a bitter pill to swallow for the Lady Hatchets, the large crowd that accompanied them to Vincennes on Saturday, and for coach Gretchen Miles. Following the game, Miles praised her three seniors – Hunsinger, Audra Stallman, and Lupe Perez – who were a part of four consecutive winning seasons and, as seniors, led the program to the its best season in a decade.
“It’s tough, you go into a locker room and you have a lot of heads hanging and tears flowing. For the seniors, it’s just all the work, the years of dedication they have put in,”said Miles. “It just doesn’t get any better than those three seniors. They’re three totally different kids, but together they have made a successful basketball team.
“And it’s a credit to them (seniors) also how well our younger kids have stepped up this season because of their leadership and guidance. On game nights, the coaches are just kind of like decoration out there,” said Miles. “It’s just all the time they’ve put in, the hard work they’ve put forth. As coaches, we’re the lucky ones to have kids like this on our basketball team.”