NORTH PLATTE – For the second year in a row Broken Bow upset the chances for a high powered team to win the Southwest Conference title. Last year it was a state-bound Gothenburg team that the Indians took out. This year, it was a two-loss Cozad team that Broken Bow fought back to knock off in overtime to take the crown with a 53-51 victory.
To be fair, this is a very good Broken Bow team (16-2). This win was no fluke, but for awhile it looked like Cozad was going to run away and hide. The Haymakers led by 13 at halftime and didn’t appear to cool down early in the third quarter. Nate Neil was on fire from outside the arch. He knocked down five three-pointers.
However, slowly the Indians started to cut into the lead. By the end of the third quarter it was a five-point game. Their defense went to work, allowing only seven points to Cozad in the fourth quarter. The Haymakers slowed down and Broken Bow took advantage. Cozad had the ball with the game tied at the end of regulation, but turned the ball over. Broken Bow took over with eight second to play. Cozad’s Dillon Geiser stopped the Indians Padyn Borders, Geiser grabbed the ball and was fouled as the horn went off. However, Cozad was not yet in the bonus as it was only Broken Bow’s fifth foul, so time was allowed to expire with no free throws.
The overtime period was a defensive affair with only two points scored. They were with under five seconds left when Borders made two free throws.
Cozad had the ball with 4.8 seconds. Trestian Siemering put up a shot, it missed, Geiser grabbed the rebound, and put the ball in the basket. However, the officials decided the shot fell after the horn had sounded and waved off the basket, giving Broken Bow the SWC championship.
The Indians were led in scoring by Grayson Garey, who came off the bench to score 11.
With the loss Cozad falls to 15-3.