OMAHA-The North Platte High School girls' basketball team fell 45-41 to Kearney on Tuesday night in its district semifinal game.Kearney will go on to play Millard West in the A-3 district finals while NPHS finishes the season with an 11-12 record.
Both teams played to a deadlock in the first half with the score tied at 18 all at halftime.
But Kearney (16-9) began the second half with a 10-0 run. The Lady Dawgs then chipped away at the lead and they only trailed 33-30 at the end of the third quarter.
North Platte battled in the fourth and it took the lead at 39-38 just inside three minutes left after a three-pointer by Allison Sawyer.
But the lead didn't last. The Bearcats regained the lead on the next possession on a basket by Kelsey Wiemers. Then Kearney scored the next three points on free throws for a 43-39 lead with under a minute left.
Sally Hengen scored what ended up being the last points of the season for the Lady Bulldogs with a pair of free throws after being fouled with 14 seconds left.
Wiemers was fouled immediately after receiving the inbound pass. She missed on the front end of the final one-and-one for the Bearcats. But Payton Cudaback got the offensive rebound for Kearney and she made both free throws after being fouled.
Sawyer missed a three-pointer in the last seconds and the Lady Bearcats hung on for the win, avenging an early January loss to NPHS at the Dawg House.