POCAHONTAS - With a 3-pointer by Adam Reiter in the final 30 seconds tying the game at 57-57, the Estherville Lincoln Central boys were looking at least at overtime against Pocahontas Area on Thursday.
But the Indians did a better job of playing until the buzzer. After a missed shot, Pocahontas' Logan Jepsen put back the miss as the horn sounded to give the hosts a 59-57 victory.
"We were down 4-5 points in the second half and were able to bounce back," said ELC coach York Plagge. "But we had some defensive breakdowns in the second half that cost us in the end."
The Midgets converted five 3-pointers in the first half in leading 18-15 after one quarter and 30-27 at halftime.
The defensive lapses occurred in the third quarter as Pocahontas rallied to take a 43-41 lead heading into the final frame.
Down 55-54 in the final 1:30, ELC had a chance to take the lead. Evan Hansen missed a shot with Tucker Milburn grabbing the rebound. But then the Midgets turned the ball over and ELC was forced to foul. After two free throws by the Indians, ELC set up a play for Reiter to hit the 3-pointer.
Hansen led ELC with 15 points while Matt Burrell and Tyler Swanson each had 11 points. Joe Heinrichs finished with seven, Reiter had six, Derek Nieland had three and Milburn and David Hughes each had two.
ELC (4-6 overall, 2-3 in the Lakes Conference) hosts LeMars at home tonight.