A few centimeters were all Leavenworth needed Friday to complete an epic comeback and send senior night into overtime.
Instead, Jason Randall's and Cameron Wiggins' last-second shots couldn't quite fall, and the Pioneers boys' basketball team lost its ninth straight.
It was a similar script to many of the games during the month-long streak. Hang around early, play a lethargic quarter and trail big before making a furious comeback that falls a buck short.
"We just haven't been playing hard enough together early," Leavenworth boys' coach Larry Hogan said. "We didn't play with energy until late. I would try to start pressing teams earlier, but we don't have the depth to do it."
The nine-game losing streak is the longest in Larry Hogan's thirty-plus year tenure. This year is Leavenworth's first losing season since 2003-04.
The comeback started with the Pioneers down 15 early in the fourth ― in the third they were down by 20 plus at one point. Leavenworth forced multiple turnovers by forcing Northwest to inbound it near the sideline, and then immediately trapping.
Big 3-pointers by Cameron Wiggins, Jeff George and Jason Randall fed the flames.
Down six in the last minute, George hit a long 3-pointer around the 30-second mark to cut it to just three. On the in-bound, Leavenworth's trap caused a jump ball and gave it back to the Pioneers for the final possession, where Wiggins' and Randall's threes were just off.
Leavenworth outscored Northwest 30-15 in the fourth. It was Northwest's 48-30 margin from the first through the third quarter that was the problem.
"We're just going to keep practicing hard and see what happens," Hogan said.
Wiggins led the team with 22 points. George had 18.
Leavenworth, 6-12, will try to get off the schneid Tuesday against Olathe East at 7 p.m.
Lions take control at Mill Valley
In a fight for the league title driver's seat Friday, it looked bleak early for Lansing.
The Lions boys' basketball team trailed 12-6 entering the second quarter, putting a packed Mill Valley gym in full throat.
However, Lansing's Roy Clayter and his 10 second-quarter points keyed a game-defining, 19-2 run that wiped away any chance of a Jaguar victory.
"He was the difference," Lansing coach Rod Briggs said. "We got out and defended really well also. We just got after them and proved that if we play defense, our offense will pick up."
From there, the Lions galloped to a 50-37 win.
"It's a huge win," Briggs said. "It helps us stay at the No. 1 seed for sub-state as well."
Clayter led the Lansing in scoring with 14 points, Clay Young had 13 and Joe Schneider added 12.
Page 2 of 2 - Lansing, 17-1, will play at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday at Turner.
Immaculata can't keep up with McLouth
On the road Friday, the Immaculata boys' basketball team simply could not keep pace with its host.
McLouth posted 25 first-half points and then nearly doubled in quarters three and four to defeat the Raiders 46-30.
"I just think they made some good shots and moved the ball really well," Imac coach Mike Connelly said. "They really showed discipline in their offense and moved the ball until they found the open man."
While Immaculata play well defensively, its sluggish offense put it in a 25-14 hole at half. The closest the team cut the deficit was 39-30.
Connor Schmidling led the team in scoring with 18 points followed by Sean Murray and Danny Boisson, who each tallied four.
Immaculata will travel to ACCHS Monday for a 7:30 p.m. game.
Struggles continue for Ridge
ACCHS is not a team struggling squads want to face, and Pleasant Ridge found that out Friday.
The undefeated, No. 1 ranked team in the 3-2-1A class visited the Rams and beat them soundly, 70-32.
"They are No. 1 for a reason and they did what No. 1 teams do," PR coach Sean Murphy said. "They play with great chemistry, heart and toughness and we saw all that tonight."
It was ugly from the start for Ridge. After one quarter of play, it was 27-5 in favor of the visitors and it got worse from there.
Nick Reckers finished with eight points to lead PR while Sean Spurlock had six and Adam Patterson seven.
Pleasant Ridge, 1-16, will travel to Valley Falls Tuesday for a 7 p.m. game.