Late shot by Palomo lifts Gering past Chadron

Gering let an 11-point halftime lead slip away, but got some late game heroics to pull out a 56-55 win over Chadron in boys basketball action at Gering Friday night.

It was a game of streaks as the visiting Cardinals jumped out to a 16-to-8 lead after the opening quarter. Spencer Eliason scored nine of his teams opening stanza points and had 16 at halftime. But the 6-7 junior couldn't help the visitors overcome the game's second streak.

Gering outscored Chadron 28-to-9 in the second quarter. Head coach Randy Plummer went deep on his bench to find a spark. His bench scored 10 second quarter points, including five from freshman Austin Hoffman.

Chadron owned the third quarter, outscoring the Bulldogs 18-9, cutting the deficit to two, 45-to-43, entering the final period.

The 5-8 Cardinals led by as many as four, 50-to-46. Gering senior Scott Bibb tied the game at 50-to-50 with a basket with 3:00 to go. Junior Grant Olsson put Gering back on top, 52-to-50, with a bucket :23 later.

Chadron's Bo Westlake tied the game at 52-to-52, then gave the visitors the lead 53-to-52, hitting one of two free throws with :59 seconds to go.

Gering senior Austin Ferguson then pulled down a big offensive rebound and followed it up an in with the go ahead points for the Bulldogs with :39 to go. But the fireworks weren't done yet.

A near capacity crowd watched Chadron's Von Sayeloune try to connect on his fourth three-point field goal of the second half. The 5-6 sophomore missed but was fouled by Ferguson. Sayeloune was able to hit 2-of-3 free throws with :29 left in the game. Chadron was up 55-to-54.

The Bulldogs called a time-out to set up a final play. It resulted in Gering sophomore Joses Palomo pulling up in the lane with :06 to go and hitting the game winning shot.

Chadron had one last chance, but an effort by Matt Lordino went awry and Gering held on for its 8th win of the year.

Palomo, who finished with seven points, was named the KNEB Taco John's Player of the Game for the Bulldogs. Gering had nine players score in the game. Leading the way was Olsson with 12.

Eliason had a game high 25-points and 11 rebounds to lead Chadron.

Gering is set to host Class B's number two rated Scottsbluff Saturday night. The game can be heard on KNEB-AM and kneb.com.

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