Loogootee, IN

Loogootee Lions lose in heartbreaking fashion in the semi-state semifinals over Indianapolis Lutheran, 67-66

Braydyn The Bear Lents

Loogootee Lions lead 2-0 early in the first half at the Hatchet House vs. Indy Lutheran on Saturday, March 18, 2023.Photo byPaul Neidig/Commissioner of Indiana High School Athletic Association

WASHINGTON, Ind.- The Loogootee Lions seemed shaken once the fourth quarter began as they once led by seven points to almost close the second half as the Lions led over Indianapolis Lutheran.

Missed free throw attempts, missed three-pointers, and a few three-pointers blocked by Lutheran's comeback defense, stunned the Loogootee fateful. By the end of the game for the Lions fateful who left town by police escort to the Hatchet House at 8:15 am ET, the early morning risers were left stunned and shaken while watching the end of the 2022-23 season.

This is as the Loogootee Lions are leaving the Indiana Semi-State Semifinals on a sour note. The Lions lost in an upset loss to Indianapolis Lutheran High School, 67-66.

The Hatchet House was left silent, even on the radio broadcast from Razor 94.5 out of Loogootee, the head basketball radio announcers were also left stunned.

All of this while at halftime, the Lions fateful felt proud to wake up early this morning and head straight to 8 am tonight with their heads held high. The Lions led Lutheran 27-20 by halftime as the Lion's star player, guard Peyton Bledsoe, protected the Saints’ chances to make shots, as Loogootee held their heads up high going into the locker room.

As the second half began, Lutheran began to lose their grip tight on making a dynamic run against Loogootee as the Lions were lights out with a near 17-point lead by the end of the third quarter with 3:51 left in the quarter.

Then Lutheran started shooting, and shooting was the name of the game for the Saints in the fourth quarter. Lutheran began shooting on fire from three, and blocking out Lion's man-to-man defense as Loogootee lost their grip and turned the ball over more periodically than in the first half.

With 22.1 seconds left in the fourth, the Lions went from leading the game in the first half to losing their grip closer to the end of the game. The Saints took a Loogootee turnover and took the lead over the Lions with two seconds left in the game.

However, Loogootee senior Parker Arvin went 1-2 at the free throw line with two seconds remaining making the game 67-66, but for the Lions, all of their efforts in the game were not enough to advance to the 8 pm Semi-State Finals as the Saints of Indianapolis Lutheran would celebrate a huge semi-state victory to advance to the finals.

For Loogootee, their magical run to the IHSAA Basketball Championship was over.

There were a lot of stunned fans, stunned press, and stunned players thinking the Lions had a chance, and as they say, the Lions will have to wait until next year.

The Lions finish the season at 20-8 with an 8-0 conference record and the number-one team out of the Indiana Blue-Chip Conference.

For Indianapolis Lutheran, they will play at 8 pm at the Hatchet House in Washington, Ind. in the matchup versus the winner of the 12 pm game between Jac-Cen-Del High School out of Osgood, Ind., and Rock Creek Academy out of Sellersburg.

For other schools around the Martin County region, North Daviess would fall short to Scottsburg High School at the Class 3A Semi-State semifinals south region matchup in Seymour, Ind. 47-45. Scottsburg will play the winner of the 12 pm matchup with Beech Grove High School and Guerin Catholic High School at 8 pm at Seymour High School’s Lloyd E. Scott Gym.

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Student at Indiana University Bloomington, journalism major, Class of 2024, sports media minor, staff writer/journalist for Hoosiers Network, freelancer "It's called the American Dream cause you have to be asleep to believe it." -- George Carlin

Bloomington, IN

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