NORTH PLATTE -- The Western Nebraska Community College men's basketball team put four players in double figures, but it wasn't enough as No. 13 North Platte Community College received a double-double from Aireon Porter in earning an 80-69 south subregion win Saturday afternoon in North Platte.
WNCC closed to within 25-23 on a Tyler Crosbie 3-pointer, but that was when North Platte went on a 9-0 run to grab a 34-23 lead before settling on a 41-27 halftime lead.
In the second half the Cougars used a "box and one" on Knights' leading scorer Ethan Montalvo and that allowed several other players to get going offensively. North Platte led by 16 53-37 and later 57-43 before the Cougars made their run, slicing the lead to six points on a Derrick Bowers 3-pointers, 59-53.
The Knights came back to push the lead back to double digits at 65-53 and later led 72-61 with three minutes to play. WNCC cut the lead to eight points on a Bowers old-fashioned 3-point play and tried to get the contest closer. Each time, though, North Platte had an answer as they hit clutch free throws to earn the win.
The Knights held the Cougars to 39 percent shooting in the game. WNCC was just 4 of 19 from the 3-point area compared to 5 of 12 for the Knights. North Platte also out-rebounded the Cougars 42-32.
Tre'Vaum Hymer led all scorers as he finished with 19 points. Also for the Knights, Tim Simmons added 18. Porter finished with a double-double of 17 points and 13 rebounds. Montalvo finished with just 11 points.
WNCC was led by Bowers with 16 points followed by Crosbie with 15. Also hitting double digits was Brandon Morley and Youssoupha Kane each with 11 points.
WNCC, 15-12, will be back in action next week with three games to wrap up the regular season. The Cougars will host Eastern Wyoming on Tuesday before hosting Lamar Community College on Friday. The Cougars will finish off the regular season on Saturday when they will travel to Northeastern Junior College.
WNCC (15-12) 27 42 -- 69
NPCC (23-4) 41 39 -- 80
Tyler Crosbie 13, Preston Christensen 4, Youssoupha Kane 11, Diante Mitchell 4, DouDou Gueye 2, Joel Einfeldt 6, Derrick Bowers 16, Brandon Morley 11.
Cameron Williams 11, Ethan Montalvo 11, Aireon Porter 17, Tre'Vaun Hymer 19, Jake Maslo 4, Tim Simmons 18.
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