WAHOO — Strategically Platteview switched to a 2-3 zone defense in the second half.
But realistically, it was 6-foot-10 senior Brady Heiman in the middle who stymied Wahoo’s offense, particularly in the pivotal fourth quarter.
The Nebraska recruit registered five of his nine blocked shots in the final period when the Class B No. 3 Trojans outscored C-1 No. 1 Wahoo 15-3 on their way to a 57-45 boys basketball victory, knocking the host Warriors (10-1) from the unbeaten ranks before an overflow crowd of 1,200.
Wahoo scored just three points in the final 12 minutes, 51 seconds of the game, their last points coming on a follow shot by Will Shanahan that put the Warriors up 45-42 with 6:56 left. The Warriors were 1-of-17 from the field in the final eight minutes and missed all eight of their three-point attempts.
“Teams try to challenge Brady, and he’s always been an elite shot blocker,” said Platteview coach Tim Brotzki, whose team improved to 11-2. “He blocks and alters so many shots. It’s hard to get in the lane and make buckets when he’s defending down low.”
Heiman finished with 16 points and 17 rebounds to go with his nine blocked shots. He was one of three Trojans who finished in double-figures as junior guard Evan Kingston netted 14 points and 6-3 all-state senior Nate Thayer added 11.
While Heiman provided the defense, fellow senior Garrett Kirwan gave Platteview the boost of energy it needed to take over in the final period. After the Warriors went in front 45-42, Kirwan scored four straight points, finally giving Platteview its first lead of the game 46-45 on a free throw with 4:21 left.
The Trojans extended the margin to three on their next possession when Thayer delivered a pass from the top of the key to a wide-open Heiman for a dunk.
Kirwan had five points and six rebounds in the fourth quarter.
“We needed someone to give us a spark there at the end, and I thought I could do it at the defensive end,” Heiman said. “Garrett’s a football player, so we expect him to be a physical rebounder and play with a lot of energy. Garrett just did his thing in the fourth quarter.”
Wahoo scored the first seven points of the game before Heiman dunked an alley-oop pass from Thayer, the third time in the first three minutes they had tried that play after the first two misfired.
Wahoo led by as many as nine points in the first quarter and took a 31-26 advantage into intermission following a Blake Lacey step-back three-pointer at the buzzer. The Warriors then went on a 7-2 run to start the second half, with Cameron Quick hitting a turnaround in the lane to make it 38-28 less than two minutes into the third period.
Wahoo’s offense grinded to a halt after that.
“We couldn’t get any perimeter shots to fall, and Heiman just took over in the middle. He seemed to block every shot we tried down there,” Wahoo coach Kevin Scheef said. “We felt good about the 10-point lead early in the third quarter, but we needed to keep grinding.”
Brendan Lacey led a balanced Wahoo attack with 10 points, while Quick and Shanahan added nine each.
Wahoo girls 51, Platteview 42
The Class C-1 No. 6 Warriors (11-2) scored the game’s first 18 points and then held off several Platteview second-half rallies to get the win. Hallie Reeves, a 5-8 junior all-state guard, led three Wahoo players in double-figures with 14 points, while 6-foot freshman Elle Glock and 5-8 senior Taryn Scheef added 12 and 11, respectively.
Glock hit a pair of three-pointers in the first quarter to lead Wahoo to a 13-0 lead after the first eight minutes.
“Not a bad start and kind of surprising against a team like that,” Wahoo coach Linda Walker said. “Our energy level was high, we played good defense and we hit shots.”
Platteview (10-3) had the deficit to nine points early in the third quarter, only to see the Warriors respond with nine straight points, increasing the margin to 31-13 on a three-pointer by Scheef.
The Trojans got as close as 45-40 with 1:43 left in the game on a three-pointer by Sabrina Starks. Wahoo then iced it by hitting 6 of 8 free throws in the final 1:25.
“I was pleased with how the girls squeezed it there at the end after they (Platteview) made their run,” Walker said. “They handled the pressure, never panicked and broke it open again there at the end.”
Platteview Super-State senior and Creighton recruit Payton Brotzki led all scorers with 21 points.