It was a non-conference matchup of state-ranked teams in boys basketball in Plainview Saturday pitting the Lyle/Pacelli Athletics from the Southeast Conference, the No. 10 team in the state in Class A in the latest poll from the Minnesota Basketball News and sporting a record of 20-3 against the Bulldogs of Plainview-Elgin-Millville from the Three Rivers Conference, ranked No. 12 in the state in Class AA and featuring a record of 19-4. In a game that saw the Bulldogs lead by as many as 13 points in the second half, a rally by LP that saw them tie the score with just over one minute left ultimately fell just short as the Bulldogs held on to win, 60-57.
P-E-M never trailed in the contest, and they ended the first half on a 17-6 run to increase a 21-19 lead to 38-25 at the halftime break. The Bulldogs pushed the lead to 15 early in the second half at 40-25 and led 46-33 when the Athletics vaulted themselves right back into the game with a 13-5 run to cut the P-E-M lead to 52-51 late in the second half. Lyle/Pacelli eventually tied the game at 57 apiece with just over one minute left, but unfortunately for the Athletics, the Bulldog’s defense rose to the fore and made two defensive stops in the final minute, coupled with three free throws to secure the hard-fought win.
The Athletics were led offensively Saturday by Mac Nelson, who poured in 25 points, plus he added six rebounds, Buay Koak just missed a double-double with nine points and 12 of LP’s 33 rebounds as the Athletics outrebounded the Bulldogs 33-26 for the contest, plus he added one assist and a team-high two blocked shots, Jake Truckenmiller also scored nine points Saturday, plus he added two rebounds, two assists, a team-high four steals and a blocked shot, forward Hunter Bauer scored eight points and pulled in four rebounds and Landon Meyer tallied six points, two rebounds and two assists off the LP bench in the loss Saturday.
Lyle/Pacelli now stands at 20-4 overall on the season, and the Athletics are off until Friday when they will travel to Adams to take on the Southland Rebels in the Southeast Conference, with the varsity tip-off at 7:15 p.m. that evening.