We’re covering NSAA Boys State Tournament Basketball
Live from Pinnacle Bank Arena; stay tuned to this page for score updates for all the games on Thursday, March 9.
Class D2 No.1 Wynot (22-4) vs. No.8 Paxton (17-5)
The first-seeded Wynot Blue Devils took on the eighth-seeded Paxton Tigers in the first round of the Class D-2 state tournament at the Pinnacle Bank Arena.
It was a very physical first quarter, as not much scoring happened. Paxton junior Rylin Johns hit a contested midrange shot at the buzzer to tie the game at 9-9 through one.
The Blue Devils found rhythm in the second quarter, taking the lead halfway through and holding onto it despite the Tigers getting within one-point multiple times. Junior guard Carson Wieseler scored a putback with two seconds left to give the Blue Devils a 25-19 lead at the half.
Wynot added to their lead in the third quarter, with junior guard Zack Foxhoven making plays on both ends of the court. The Blue Devils led 39-27 after three.
The Tigers did not go down without a fight as senior forward Isaiah Fox took over in the fourth quarter. However, Wynot closed the game at the free throw line, winning 57-47.
Foxhoven finished with 19 points for the Blue Devils, while Fox led the Tigers with 22 points. Wynot moves on to the semi-finals and will play the winner of fourth-seeded Osceola and fifth-seeded Sumner-Eddyville.
By Anthony Rubek
Class D2 No.4 Osceola (23-5) vs. No.5 Summer-Eddyville-Miller (20-5)
The fourth-seeded Osceola Bulldogs took on the fifth-seeded Sumner-Eddyville-Miller Mustangs in the first round of the Class D-2 state tournament at the Pinnacle Bank Arena
Junior forward Jace Rosentreader had a hot start for the Mustangs, scoring nine points off the bench in the first quarter. The Mustangs led after one, 15-12.
The second quarter was a battle as both sides went at it, with their leading scorers stepping up. Bulldog junior forward Kale Gustafson dominated on the offensive boards, but the Mustangs led 25-20 heading into the half.
It was a tale of two halves in the third quarter, with Osceola taking over the first 4 minutes, earning a 36-30 lead. However, the Mustangs came storming back, going on a 7-0 run to end the quarter up 37-36.
The Mustangs added to their lead in the fourth quarter, but Osceola did not give up, cutting the deficit to two points. However, the Mustangs were able to ice the game at the line, winning 62-54.
Rosentreader finished with 24 points for the Mustangs, while senior guard Isaiah Zelasney scored 24 points for the Bulldogs. Sumner-Eddyville-Miller moves on to the semi-finals and will play first-seeded Wynot.
By Anthony Rubek
Class B No.1 Skutt Catholic (22-3) vs. No.8 Bennington (17-8)
Top seed Omaha Skutt took on eight-seeded Bennington in the first Boys Class B State basketball game.
The game started slowly. After a quarter, Skutt led by a score of just 9-4. Six of their nine points came courtesy of Justin Ferrin.
The story of the second quarter was Skutt’s height advantage, as 6’8 forward Jacob Brack and 6’9 forward Jack Healey made things tough on Bennington. The Skyhawks took a 21-11 lead into the half.
Skutt extended their lead to as many as 19 points at one point in the third quarter. However, a hot stretch by Bennington, led by Gunnar Lym’s seven third-quarter points, cut the deficit. Skutt led 35-24 heading into the final quarter.
Bennington began to build momentum early in the fourth, but eventually, Skutt would pull away and win it 56-40.
Jacob Ferrin was Skutt’s leading scorer with 15, Gunnar Lym was Bennington’s top scorer with 11. Skutt advances to take on the winner of Elkhorn and Crete.
By Noah Jones
Class B No.4 Elkhorn (18-7) vs. No.5 Crete (18-6)
Fourth-seeded Elkhorn took on fifth-seeded Crete in the second Class B game of the day at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
The first quarter was tight as both teams went back and forth frantically. After a quarter of fast-paced action, it was knotted up 13-13.
Crete came storming out of the gates in the second quarter. The Cardinals went on an eight-point run that included a thunderous dunk by Jabin Gardiner. After a very high-scoring quarter, Crete took a 36-23 lead into the half.
The Cardinals continued to control the game in the third quarter. Ethan Yungtum had a big quarter for Elkhorn, scoring 10 of his eventual 24 points. Crete led 48-35 after three quarters.
It looked like Crete was running away with it; they had a 15-point lead with three minutes left. However, Elkhorn still had some life; in less than a minute, they had cut the lead to single digits. Unfortunately for the Antlers, the late run would come up short. Crete would win 66-61.
The Cardinals were led by co-top scorers Aidan McDowell and Benjamin Ehlers, who had 13. Elkhorn had the game’s two leading scorers despite the loss. Ethan Yungtum had 24, and Colin Comstock had 23.
Crete advances to take on Omaha Skutt in the semi-finals.