The North Platte Lady Bulldogs were on the bad side of a game where neither team had a lead of more than the final margin of five as they fell, 47-42, to Scottsbluff at the Dawg House.

“It was a close game and little things matter,” NPHS Head Coach Tyson Hammond said. “We needed to shoot it better from the free throw line. Those points when you execute well, are aggressive and you get to the line, you’ve got to have them.”

The score was tied at 9-9 at the end of the first quarter after Macie Freeze made a three-pointer for the Bulldogs (8-8). The second quarter was also a stalemate and with the score tied at 18 at halftime with North Platte again scoring the last points of the quarter as Keke Williams got a layup off a feed from Clancy Brown.

NPHS led by four, 26-22, in the third quarter after another Williams basket. But Paige Horne got a three-point play off an offensive rebound to bring Scottsbluff (13-9) to within one. The Bearcats took the lead when Marly Laucomer made a three-pointer. Laucomer followed with another basket to make it a four-point game with a little under three minutes left in the third.

“That was a big stretch,” Hammond said. “We had a little momentum and a good defensive possession. If we get that rebound, things might be different. That gave them a little momentum and they made a little run. We did a good job of staying strong. We stopped their run and we battled back but that was a key point in the game.”

Scottsbluff led by one, 34-33, heading into the fourth. The Bulldogs tied the game at 36 on a free throw by Brown. But Horne got another three-point play to give the Bearcats the lead for good.

The Bearcats took their biggest lead at 44-39 with 28 seconds left after a Bella Scherer free throw. Brown hit a three from downtown to bring North Platte to within two.

But Laucomer knocked down a pair of free throws to make it a two-possession game. Brown missed her next attempt for three and Scottsbluff clinched the win when Ava Reed made a free throw with just five seconds left.

Next, the Lady Dawgs will host Gering (6-15) on Saturday.

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