The Eastern Musketeers made history this week – The sectional title they won last Saturday night in Crawford County was only the fourth for the program, and none of the previous three (1972, 1991 and 2001) followed with a regional championship.
However, Eastern’s regional title hopes came to a stunning finale Saturday at Memorial Gymnasium when a half-court buzzer beater lifted the South Ripley Raiders over the Musketeers by one point to win the game.
Cory Walker nailed a game-winning 3-pointer at the final buzzer to lift South Ripley over the Musketeers in the Class 2A Southridge Regional semifinal, 57-56.
Eastern (15-11) led 52-46 with 2:22 left in regulation and continued to lead up until the end of the game.
Having just hit one of two free throws, Eastern led the game with just seconds left – 56-54. South Ripley got the ball and put up a hail-mary, going in and shocking the Musketeer faithful.
Four Musketeers scored in double figures. Alex Doebler and Grant Newcomb shared team-high scoring honors with 14 points apiece.
Jessie Murphy chipped in 12 and Austin Roberts scored 10.
Ty Tucker led the Raiders (17-8) with 26 points. South Ripley lost the Saturday night’s regional final to Linton-Stockton, 61-46.
Eastern (15-11): Alex Doebler 14, Grant Newcomb 14, Jessie Murphy 12, Austin Roberts 10, Khalil McDaniel 6.
South Ripley (17-8): Ty Tucker 26, Brady Meyer 9, Elijah Roepke 8, Kaleb Riley 5, Cory Walker 5, Derek Turner 3, Chase Samples 1.
3-point field goals: Eastern 5 (Doebler 2, Newcomb 2, Murphy); South Ripley 5 (Roepke 2, Tucker, Turner, Walker).