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Junior high boys face Barr-Reeve, Shoals, and Forest Park
    The junior high boys’ basketball schedule kicked into full gear the past week as the seventh and eighth graders traveled to Barr-Reeve’s Kavanaugh Kourt last Monday, hosted Shoals on Saturday, and entertained visiting Forest Park this past Monday evening. The Vikings squeaked out a 25-22 win against the Lion seventh graders while the eighth grade was soundly defeated 34-14.  In the seventh grade affair, Loogootee trailed throughout until a basket early in the fourth frame gave them their only lead of the contest at 20-19.  However, with time winding down, a missed opportunity to tie the game never came to fruition. Darian Stewart led the way with 11. Ben Blackwell and Hayden Bell each picked up four and Gabe Nolley nailed a trey to account for the scoring. The second game was decided in the third stanza when the Vikings stretched an eleven-point halftime lead to a 30-10 bulge. Brandon Wilz tallied eight, Dirk Fahey four, and Matt Mathies just two as the eighth graders dropped their second straight game to begin the campaign.
    Both teams bounced back in a big way against Martin County neighbor Shoals bright and early on Saturday morning.  The seventh graders were up 25-4 at intermission and coasted 46-10 as most of the team dented the scoring column. Bell delivered 14, Nolley and Blackwell six, with Stewart sinking four. Josh Sibrel, Dylan Street, Jayce Wagoner, Austin Mesarosh, Mac Osborne, Jordan Berry, Frank Bratton, and Pryce Hedrick all recorded a deuce in the lopsided outcome.  The eighth grade ran away from the Rox, shutting out Shoals 13-0 in the first frame, expanding the lead to 35-2, and completing the victory by the final count of 52-13. Mathies poured in 14 and Fahey 10 to lead the charge. Wilz walked away with eight, Casey Miller made seven, Gage Harder, Justin Gibson, and Tyler Stoll provided four, Caleb Dant collected two, and Adam Lark one marker.
   The Lions tore up Forest Park’s seventh graders to begin this week, doubling the score 42-21. The difference was the third quarter as a 20-7 home team lead ballooned to 34-11 after three periods of play.  Bell stroked 18, Blackwell eight, Nolley five, Stewart four, and Jordan Berry two. Stewart, Jayce Wagoner, and Dylan Street rattled the Rangers all night with sweet dishes for assists inside as Bell and Blackwell banked in lay-ins all evening long. The finale was close for a half as the eighth grade broke away from a 19-17 affair after two quarters to even their season mark at 2-2 with a 42-31 victory.  Brandon Wilz pumped in a game-high 14 while Matt Mathies and Dirk Fahey contributed 11 points apiece to put three guys in double figures. Guards Casey Miller and Gage Harder each made three to account for the scoring.
   
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