Neligh-Oakdale exploded in the second half to down Pierce to advance in the Shootout on the Elkhorn Holiday Tournament on Thursday afternoon.
The Warriors defeated Pierce 51-42 and will play for fifth place in the 5 p.m. game on Friday. The girls didn't fare so well on Thursday and struggled to find the basket, falling 54-4 against Ponca. They'll play in the 3:30 p.m. seventh-place game.
In the boy's game, Neligh-Oakdale and Pierce were evenly matched in the first half and went into intermission knotted at 28-all. But the Warriors held Pierce to just five third-quarter points, bouncing out to a seven-point advantage heading into the final stanza.
Pierce clawed back to within four points with 4:42 to play, but Neligh-Oakdale kept its poise and finished with the nine-point victory. The Warriors will play the winner of Wakefield/Battle Creek tomorrow.
It was a struggle all afternoon for the Lady Warriors, though. Ponca shut out Neligh-Oakdale in the first quarter and allowed only two points in the entire half. The Warriors equaled that effort in the second half as Bailey Frey and Rachel Higgins both scored two points for Neligh-Oakdale.