DIAMOND — The Diamond Wildcats punched their ticket to the championship game of the second annual Diamond Classic with a 50-48 victory Thursday over Galena (Missouri, not Kansas).
Diamond built a 23-12 halftime lead only to see the guests outscore the hosts 21-11 in the third to make it a 34-33 game entering the fourth.
The Wildcats had just enough points in them to survive and win.
Luke Lawson scored a team-high 16 points and he made three baskets in the fourth, while Noah Hubbard scored all 10 of his points in the final three quarters and he netted all four of his points in the fourth on free throws. Ben Moreland scored six points in the first quarter and then hit a trifecta in the fourth to account for his nine points. Blake Savage scored all five of his points on free throws, including three in the fourth.
Dawson Sherer scored a game-high 20 points for Galena, Wyatt Snelson added 13, and Skylar Nielsen added 10 more to form a trio that produced 43 of Galena's 48 points.
Thomas Jefferson rolled over Wheaton 78-44 in the other game Thursday and Dylan Dean-Heck led four in double figures with 22 points and Aaron Wells had 17, Dhruv Gheewala 12, and Brock Conklin 10.
In the championship game Saturday night, Diamond took a 64-33 loss to Crane. The Wildcats, 2-1 overall, return to action Thursday through Saturday in the Seneca Tournament.