The Pocahontas Area boys basketball team held off Southeast Valley down the stretch to win 56-51 Thursday night in a 2a district semifinal in Rockwell City.
The game featured 12 lead changes and five ties. The Indians led 11-7 after the 1st quarter, but SE Valley took a 27-23 lead into the locker room. The Jaguars took their biggest lead of the game at 30-23 early in the 3rd, but Poky overcame that deficit and led 43-42 going into the 4th. SE Valley took regained the lead by one early in the 4th, but Poky took a 45-44 lead and never trailed after that, as their defense stepped up, and the Indians built their biggest lead at five points twice down the stretch. Ben Olson, who hit a pair of big free throws previously in the 4th to build the Indians lead to five, made one of two free throws with 8.3 seconds left to make the score 54-51. Southeast Valley called timeout, and having to go the length of the floor, Tanner Youngberg wound up with a steal at midcourt, and drove in for a layup just before the buzzer.
Youngberg led Poky with 18 points, followed by Austin Roetman with 15, and Aaron Aljets had 11. Conner Conrad had a game-high 23 for the Jaguars, who finish at 13-10.
Pocahontas Area is now 17-5, and will play next Tuesday in a 2A District Final at 7pm in Fort Dodge against Fort Dodge St. Edmond, who won their semifinal game over Eagle Grove 68-40. Poky’s district final game will be broadcast on Mix 101.7FM KAYL.