Blue Valley Northwest led almost the entire game but had a hard time putting rival Blue Valley North away in a 6A substate championship game at BV Northwest.
Eventually BV Northwest got there. The first-seeded Huskies made 6 of 8 free throws in the final 1:26 and beat BV North 51-46. It was the third time this season the Huskies were able to get by the Mustangs. This one meant a trip to the state tournament.
The Mustangs cut the margin to 32-29 on two free throws by junior Colby Bullock with 7:16 left.
BV Northwest then scored four points in 2 seconds and made it 36-29. Sophomore Joseph Pleasant hit a shot under the basket. He was fouled but missed the free throw, but junior Damien Jackson got the offensive rebound and scored for the Huskies.
Blue Valley North mounted a serious rally and got to within three points, but the Mustangs did not get any closer.
Huskies sophomore Sam Ward was fouled twice in the last 36 seconds and made 3 of 4 free throws. The two foul shots he made with 15 seconds left produced the final margin.
BV Northwest will be headed to the state tournament for the sixth time in seven years.
It was the Pleasant brothers leading the way in this one.
AJ, a 5-10 junior, had 15 points for the Huskies.
“We wanted to stick to our game plan and get the ball inside as much as possible,” he said.
Joe, a 6-6 sophomore, scored 11 of his 13 points in the second half.
“I wanted to get back to my game in the second half,” he said. “I was trying to get to the line for free throws.”
He made two easy baskets on out of bounds plays.
“They set a pick for me to get me for the easy baskets,” Joe said.
Bullock led the Mustangs with 13 points, all in the second half.
The Mustangs finished the season with a record of 13-9.