Defending champion Cedar Falls NU-High led virtually the entire but had to battle the entire way to advance to the 1A semifinals. Leading by 12 late in the third quarter the fifth ranked Panthers held off a late rally by second rated Adair-Casey for a 58-50 victory in the tournament opener.
Junior forward Eddie Diemer says it feels great to win the opener as no one wants to come to state and lose on Monday. He was one of four Panthers in double figures with 12 points and says a demanding schedule that included several larger schools helped prepare them for the tournament. Diemer says they knew that Adair-Casey was undefeated, but he says they also knew their schedule wasn’t as tough as the one they played. NU-High improves to 20-4.
Senior center Josh Harris had 16 points and 10 rebounds for Adair-Casey. Senior guard Zack Leeper also had 16 points before fouling out in the final seconds. Leeper says NU-High is a great ballclub that plays great team defense and made it seem like there were six guys out there.
Leeper says while dissapointed with the loss he is happy the season ended at the state tournament as he says being with his teammates a final time at the state tournament was a great way to end his career.
Adair-Casey ends the season with a record of 25-1.