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The Washington Park Panthers’ dream of heading to Madison for the state boys basketball tournament came to an end Thursday.

Despite a fast-paced game that was described to Racine County Eye as a “college type atmosphere,” the Panthers couldn’t overcome the Milwaukee Marquette Hilltoppers. Late in the first half, the game was tied at 28 and at the half, Panthers were down by three; 32 to 29.

The second half got underway, and the Hilltoppers increased their lead by five – 39 to 34 – just five minutes in, but Park rallied and was up by five just four minutes later; 49 to 44.

Unfortunately, Park couldn’t maintain the momentum even though they were up by one – 52 to 51 – with seven minutes left in the game and at Panther at the free throw line.

The Hilltoppers regained the lead and didn’t relinquish it again for the rest of the game. A missed free throw from Park when the Panthers were down by four with just 35 seconds to go cinched the win for Milwaukee Marquette, 67 to 62.

Milwaukee Marquette Saturday will play the winner of the Milwaukee Vincent-Milwaukee Riverside game.

**Editor’s note: thank you to Ramiro Melendez for providing the details of this story, the video and the photo!