- BOYS BASKETBALL: Kearney Goes Double OT To Edge East High
By Jeff Motz
In what has been an exciting series in recent years between the Kearney and Lincoln East boys basketball teams, another epic battle emerged Wednesday night at Lincoln High's Earl Johnson Activities Building.
Through a barrage of three-pointers and exciting runs, the Bearcats managed to outlast the Spartans in a 75-73 victory in double overtime in the semifinals of the Heartland Athletic Conference Boys Basketball Tournament.
Kearney (7-2) will play Lincoln Pius X for the HAC title at a later date to be determined.
The Bearcats jumped out to a ten point advantage in the second quarter before the East rally behind senior guard Connor Riekenberg, who sank five three-pointers during a stretch that rallied the Spartans back to tie the game at 30 with 1:04 left before halftime.
Brayden Miller sank a pair of three throws in the final 30 seconds of the quarter to put Kearney ahead 32-30.
East (7-2) had a strong start to the third quarter and had a 39-37 lead with 5:48 on the clock, after Riekenberg hit his sixth three-pointer of the game and scored another basket while Carter Glenn added to baskets during the run. The Spartans outscored the Bearcats 12-10 from that standpoint to take a 51-47 lead heading into the final quarter.
Kearney defensively turned up the heat and held East to six points in the fourth quarter and force overtime tied at 57, before heading to a second overtime deadlocked at 65.
Carson Schwarz, who led Kearney with a game-high 26 points, racked up six points in the second overtime to help give the Bearcats the two point lead. A 30-foot shot with four seconds left from East's Wes Dreamer bounced off the rim.
Riekenberg led East with 24 points, while Seth Stroh chipped in 23 points for Kearney before fouling. Bearcats' 6-8 senior post and Liberty commit Shiloh Robinson added 19 points in the win.
LINCOLN PIUS X 75, LINCOLN HIGH 64
Charlie Easley led the Thunderbolts with 25 points in helping Pius X reach the HAC championship game.
Easley scored 14 of those points during a third quarter run.
Back after missing Monday's quarterfinal win over Lincoln Southwest with a knee injury, Keyshawn Jenkins led the Links with 15 points.