Shorthanded Leesville loses a heartbreaker at Cardinal Gibbons

The team was without their star point guard, Hayes Oxendine (#5), sophomore. He will lilkey be selected to an all-conference team at the end of the season. (photo courtesy of Bob Peters)

In their final regular season matchup, Leesville suffers a gut-wrenching loss to Cardinal Gibbons by a final score of 77-75, on January 31. Hayes Oxendine, Leesville’s star sophomore guard, was unable to play in the game due to an illness.

Leesville overcame a seven-point deficit in the second half and led by as many as four in the fourth quarter. For the final five minutes of the game, the two teams traded buckets back and forth.

With just 17 seconds remaining in the game, Leesville trailed by just two when Arnav Shah, junior guard, was fouled on a 3-point attempt. He missed the shot but more importantly, Leesville had a chance to take the lead with under 15 seconds to play. He missed the first two and made the third. That shot was called off due to a lane violation on Grady Whitt.

Gibbons was able to make one more key stop to seal the win for the Crusaders.

With that loss, Leesville dropped to a 3-4 record in conference. Costly violations and fouls for Leesville gave Gibbons a few extra possessions down the stretch.

When fully present and healthy, Leesville poses a serious threat to any team in the state. As long as the Pride stays hot from beyond the ark, they shouldn’t have a problem scoring with most teams they match up with.

Leesville is going to need to stay out of foul trouble if they want to make a deep run into the state playoffs.



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