HERSHEY-The North Platte St. Pat's boys' basketball team could never shakeoff Hershey on Thursday but the Irish held on for a 43-34 victory.
"I'd say that Hershey got the better part of it with the physical play," St. Pat's coach Bill O'Malley said. "We weren't very efficient with the ball."
St. Pat's (20-1) took a 10-5 lead about halfway through the first quarter after Bryce Byrn made consecutive three-pointers.
But Hershey (3-17) answered back to tie the game after a basket by Jason Davis, which was followed by a three from fellow freshman Clay Frels.
Jacob Cook made a free throw for the Irish to give them a one-point lead at the end of the first. Alex Harms opened the scoring in the second by making a free throw and then Byrn drained another three to make it 15-10. Harms then made a hook shot on the following possession to put the Irish up seven.
But the lead didn't grow much further than that. St. Pat's led 28-18 at halftime and the margin stayed at around 10 points in the second half before the Irish came away with the win.
"We had stretches where we played pretty well," O'Malley said. "But we had a hard time of putting it together tonight."
Panther coach Dustin Jorgenson said his team worked hard to stay with St. Pat's but they just couldn't get the hoops it needed to get the momentum.
"I thought we played hard but we just didn't convert, offensively," he said.
St. Pat's 11 17 9 6 - 43
Hershey 10 8 7 9 - 34
St. Pat's (43)-Bryce Byrn 13, Jacob Cook 1, Drew McClellen 2, Cory Clinch 3, Andrew O'Neill 4, Alex Harms 12, Mark Mayfield 8
Hershey (34)-Logan Weir 2, DiJon Roberts 3, Clay Frels 3, Landan Maassen 4, Kalon Czarnick 3, Josh Margritz 8, Baylor Hellmuth 2, Ariel Quiroga 3, Jason Davis 4, Dustin Streeter 2
Field Goals: SP 10-21, H 2-4; Three Point Goals: SP 3 (Byrn 3), H 4 (Roberts, Frels, Czarnick, Quiroga)