(Atlantic) The Treynor Cardinals won their 21st straight game and advanced to the state tournament in the process with their 56-51 triumph over Kuemper Catholic Monday night in front of a roaring, packed house in Atlantic.
Kuemper Catholic appeared to be taking control of the game late in the first half when they extended the lead to double figures. Kuemper led 25-13 with 4:35 to go in the 2nd quarter, but Treynor stormed back with a strong flurry at the end of the half to tie things up at 25.
The second half was a battle all the way through. Nick Paulsen hit a layup and a then aleft-corner three-pointer early in the third to give the Cardinals the 30-25 lead forcing Kuemper Catholic to play from behind nearly the entire second half.
Treynor missed some key free throws down the stretch, but got enough defensive stops and key rebounds to hold off the Knights comeback charge. Freshman Trey Castle eventually sealed it by hitting two free throws with 3.9 seconds left. The free throws came after Kuemper Catholic missed an open three that would have tied it up.
Treynor was led by Nolan Chapman with 17 while Jacob Flathers and Nick Paulsen each added 13. The Cardinals are now 23-1 on the season.
Kuemper Catholic, who finished 3rd at state a year ago, ends up at 19-5. Cole Neary scored 16 points. Kuemper Catholic graduates 11 seniors.
Click here for the comments from Kuemper Catholic coach Tyler Edwards
Click here for the postgame with Treynor coach Scott Rucker