Highlights from the 2020 Nebraska Prep Classic
Photo Credit: Eric Francis

Highlights from the 2020 Nebraska Prep Classic

January 26, 2020

On Saturday, DJ Sokol Arena in downtown Omaha played host to the 29th annual Nebraska Prep Classic, an event that brings together boys and girls teams from across Nebraska and Iowa.

The games ran from 10 in the morning until nearly midnight. Jacob Padilla caught the second half of the day including four games on the boys side.

Omaha Westside 71, Sioux City (Iowa) East 56

The Warriors closed out a brutally tough week with a good win over Sioux City East after dropping close games to two of the best teams in Nebraska in Bellevue West and Millard North.

The Warriors built up a 13-point lead at halftime but the Black Raiders started to make a comeback attempt — until their second-leading scorer picked up his fourth and fifth fouls on a  charge and a technical foul late in the third quarter. A single-digit deficit ballooned back to 12 heading into the fourth and the Warriors cruised to the finish line.

All five Westside starters scored nine or more points led by sophomore guard and game MVP Reggie Thomas with 21 points on 8-of-14 from the field, 2-of-3 from 3 and 3-of-5 from the free-throw line. He chipped in six boards and three steals as well.

Omaha signee Jadin Booth hit his first 3 and then missed his last four, but he found other ways to impact the game besides scoring, finishing with 13 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two steals. Senior Carl Brown shot 4-of-9 from 3 for 12 points while senior point guard PJ Ngambi added 11 points and six assists.

Norris 54, Omaha Bryan 35

Both teams got off to a slow start, but the Titans dominated the second quarter 20-6 to blow the game open and earn a win over a Class A team. MVP Izaiah Pankoke scored 20 points to lead Norris to its ninth straight victory. Trey Deveaux added 13 points for the Titans.

The highlight of the game for the Bears came from junior Jai’Lyn Spears, who led Bryan with 11 points. At one point, Spears drove right down the middle of the lane and rose up for a tomahawk jam in traffic.

Treynor (Iowa) 69, Oakland-Craig 42

The two teams played to a draw in the first quarter but Treynor dominated the last three en route to a near-30-point win.

Game MVP Jack Tiarks, an Iowa State football preferred walk-on commit, put on a dunk show en route to a game-high 19 points. The 6-foot-4 senior apparently has made a habit of playing above the rim to the point where Treynor folks have a dunk tracker on Twitter for him. He’s into the 30s after at least three dunks on Saturday.

What Seagren, a 6-foot-7 South Dakota State football commit, led Oakland-Craig with 16 points including a pair of 3-pointers.

Boys Town 62, Spencer (Iowa) 59

Fans that stuck it out until 10:20 p.m. for the tipoff of the nightcap were treated to the best game of the day as the Cowboys pulled out a tight win over the visiting Tigers from Northern Iowa.

Spencer hit a 3 just before the buzzer to take a 23-20 lead after one quarter, and the Tigers tacked on on more point to that lead at halftime, 36-32. Boys Town turned the tables in the third quarter, however, as the Cowboys outscored Spencer 17-8 to take a 49-44 lead after three.

The teams went back and forth throughout the forth until Uzziah Freeman drew a foul and hit both free throws to put the Cowboys up 60-59 with 21.9 to play. Boys Town sealed the win with a steal and a pair of free throws when a pass bounced off a Tiger’s hands under the basket with a couple seconds to play.

Freeman was named MVP after putting up 21 points on 7-of-1 from the field and 7-of-9 from the line, 11 rebounds (four offensive) and two blocks. TJ Covington had a big scoring game as well with 19 points on 7-of-12 shooting (3-of-6 from 3) while Jahad Hart did a little of everything with 11 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals.

Sophomore guard Karter Petzenhauser, the son of Spencer’s head coach, led all scorers with 24 points on four 2-pointers, four 3-pointers and four free throws.

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