The Washougal boys basketball team played its best game of the year, but the Panthers went home with a heartbreaking loss in the opening round of the district tournament.
North Thurston made 31 of 32 free throws and pull out a 75-72 win in Lacey.
“North Thurston is a very good team, finished tie for first in their league,” Washougal coach Malcolm Estes said. “And we had to come up to their court. But we were ahead or close the whole game. ... We gave ourselves a chance to win, and that’s all you can ask for in the district tournament.”
Washougal will face Black Hills of Tumwater at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Chehalis in a loser-out game.
Washougal had the ball with 13 seconds left and trailing 73-72. The Panthers worked for a shot and got fouled. However, Washougal missed both free throws, finish 8 for 15 on the night.
After North Thurston converted two free throws, the Panthers got the ball back with four seconds left, but a desperation shot at the buzzer was off the mark.
David Crowley had a big night for the Panthers in his first start of the season, scoring a team-high 24 points. Aaron Deister added 13 points and Michael McElroy and Isaac Bischoff had 11 each.
NORTH THURSTON 75, WASHOUGAL 72
WASHOUGAL -- Isaac Bischoff 11, Aaron Deister 13, Michael McElroy 11, Mustapha Bah 6, David Crowley 24, Karsten Short , Trent Stauffer 0, Austin Tran 2, Joey Rubino 0, Nate Adams 5, Jaden Jantzer 0. Totals 27 (7) 8-15 72.
NORTH THURSTON -- Rushton 35, Reid 9, Campbell 0, Broeker 25, Grantham 2, Hicks 0, Stone 0, Anderson 2. Totals 18 (1) 31-32 75.
Washougal 22 20 18 12--72
N. Thurston 21 19 20 15--75