A tough 2017-18 regular season ended for the Washington Blue Lions Saturday night with a home game against Springfield Shawnee.
The Braves won this game, 51-40.
Washington ends the regular season with a record of 3-17.
The Blue Lions are in action Tuesday in the Sectional tournament at Southeastern High School against the Hillsboro Indians. Tip-off is set for 6:15 p.m.
Washington was led by junior Evan Upthegrove with 16 points, including three three-point field goals.
Sophomore Garitt Leisure hit five threes for 15 points.
Seniors Aaron Schack and Billy Lord were the game’s leading scorers for the Braves, each with 17 points.
Shawnee began with a 9-2 run to start the game.
Washington fought back and pulled to within two points by the end of the first half with Shawnee in front, 13-11.
The Blue Lions had what would turn out to be their only lead of the game, 14-13, when Leisure hit a three-pointer to begin the second quarter.
Shawnee went on to score 17 to Washington’s 13 in that period to take a 30-24 halftime lead.
The third quarter was low-scoring for both teams as the Braves scored eight to five for the Blue Lions.
It was 38-29 going into the final stanza.
The Blue Lions outscored Shawnee 10-4 in the first four minutes of the fourth quarter to pull to within three, 42-39.
The Braves, however, reversed that trend by finishing off the game with a 9-3 run for the final, 51-40.
“Every game that we’ve played, and this was our 20th, we’ve had selfish moments,” Washington head coach Shannon Bartruff said. “Either on defense, we’re too selfish to call a switch, or knock down a cutter, or to box somebody out.
“On offense, we’re too selfish to set a good screen, or to be in the right position, or to share the basketball,” Bartruff said. “Or, we’re in positions in games where it’s a two or three possession game against a 14 or 15-win team, and I felt like we were battling our butts off and we make one mistake and it’s just a meltdown. It’s what has cost us the entire year.
“It’s my fault,” Bartruff said. “I haven’t gotten through to these guys that the ‘we’ is bigger than the ‘me.’ It is frustrating.
“Eli Lynch is battling guys 30 or 40 pounds bigger than him every night,” Bartruff said. “His defensive intensity and effort was tremendous. Evan is gutting it out on one leg. Garitt, shooting the ball well early on gave him some intensity in the game on the defensive end, too.
“Blaise has been battling illness and he pretty much played every second of the game,” Bartruff said. “I can’t fault our effort, but, we had a stretch there in the third or fourth quarter where we turned the ball over four or five times in a row. We just had too many mistakes in critical situations against a good basketball team.”
SCORE BY QUARTERS
W 11 13 5 11 — 40
S 13 17 8 13 — 51
WASHINGTON — Eli Lynch 0-0-0; Dillon Steward 1 (1)-0-5; Evan Upthegrove 3 (3)-1-16; Ross Matthews Jr. 0-0-0; Garitt Leisure 0 (5)-0-15; Blaise Tayese 0-1-1; Trevor Rarick 0 (1)-0-3. TOTALS — 4 (10)-2-40. Free throw shooting: 2 of 6 for 33 percent. Three-point field goals: Leisure, 5; Upthegrove, 3; Steward, Rarick. Combined field goal shooting: 14 of 33 for 42 percent. Three-point field goal shooting: 10 of 25 for 40 percent. Turnovers: 14.
SHAWNEE — Aaron Schack 3 (2)-5-17; Cyres Cooper 2-1-5; Ethan Williams 0 (1)-0-3; Austin Lanum 1-0-2; D.J. Hayden 2-1-5; Billy Lord 6 (1)-2-17; Isaac Siemon 1-0-2. TOTALS — 15 (4)-9-51. Free throw shooting: 9 of 12 for 75 percent. Three-point field goals: Schack, 2; Williams, Lord. Combined field goal shooting: 19 of 42 for 45 percent. Three-point field goal shooting: 4 of 9 for 44 percent. Turnovers: 7.
Blue Lion j-v team falls to Braves
In the junior-varsity game Saturday, Shawnee defeated Washington, 35-24.
For the Blue Lions, Mitchell Lotz led with 10 points. He hit two three-point field goals.
Gabe Arazo sank three threes for nine points, Brice Cartwright and Drew Moats each scored two points and Hayden Burke scored one.
Connor Lyons was the game’s leading scorer for the Braves with 12 points.