Script repeated: Boys fall to Washburn in overtime

Jacob Clanton, Print Editor-in-Chief

The finish was a result and script Manhattan High had seen before, with a few small changes.

“It was different than the Shawnee Heights game in that we had some momentum going into overtime,” head coach Benji George said. “We got off to a bad start in overtime with [junior Jordan] White hitting the three, and you know, that’s what big players do.”

Much like the Shawnee Heights game, a poor start to overtime doomed the Indians (7-8, 2-6 Centennial League) in a 51-42 loss to Washburn Rural (9-5, 6-2) Tuesday night.

After watching the Junior Blues jump out to an early 6-0 lead, Manhattan turned it on, ending the first quarter tied at 10. From there, neither team was able to grab an advantage, with Washburn holding the largest lead at four points. The Indians trailed by just three points at the break.

As the third quarter dawned, the game slowed down. Washburn Rural began controlling the ball, taking over a minute off the clock on its first possession.

“I thought we flew around and flew around,” George said, “really frustrated them. They weren’t getting open looks which is what we wanted to do. We’re tough enough to grind it out.”

Unlike Washburn, MHS put the ball in the basket, flipping the score to a three-point Manhattan lead at the end of the third quarter. The Indians’ points came from all around the team.

“They’re so tough defensively, I’m not sure anybody was going to flat out take the game over,” George said. “I knew it was going to be that kind of low-scoring game.”

Though both offenses put points on the board in the fourth, neither team took a large advantage. With 2:30 left, Washburn got a boost.

In a loose ball situation, senior John Ostermann dove for the ball, unable to secure it. After Washburn secured the ball and moved up the court, those involved in the scramble began to get up. In the process, Washburn junior Savian Edwards appeared to be tripped up by Ostermann, leading to an intentional foul. As a result of the intentional, the Junior Blues got two free throws and the ball, potentially turning the tide of the game.

George was unhappy with the call, vocally disagreeing with the refs. Even so, he said he never received an explanation for the call.

Thanks to the free throws and the ball, Washburn went on a four-point mini-run, taking a three-point lead with just 67 seconds left. Sophomore Raeshon Riddick tied the game up at 38 with an and-one, sending the game to overtime.

Washburn fired out of the gate in the overtime, running out to a 43-38 lead in the first 30 seconds. From there, the Junior Blues cruised to the 51-42 victory

“It was such a low-scoring game,” George said, “[that when] you get a three-point lead, it almost feels like a 10-point lead, and so just was a bad start to overtime. We kept battling, we had an open look with Carson with a three that could have cut it to a two-point game, and things just didn’t go our way.”

Even with the loss, George was proud of his team.

“They’re just battling,” George said. “We got kids in there who are playing with so much passion, I mean they’re going to the locker room crying after a Tuesday night regular season game, they’ve just got so much invested in it.”