North Platte and West Platte were both eliminated in the first round of Class 2 District 15 action Tuesday, Feb. 21 in Lone Jack, Mo.
The No. 6 seed, North Platte lost a rematch with Kansas City Lutheran 49-34 to end the season. The Knights won the previous matchup between the two by three points in their season-opener.
North Platte finished at 7-16 overall — one year after going to the District 16 semifinals and posting a .500 record. The Panthers lose senior guards Ben French and Hunter Oliver, the biggest parts of five-player senior class that also includes Halen Kanpp, Phil James and Garrett Lamar.
After winning four straight toward the end of the year, North Platte lost its final six games.
No. 8 seed West Platte lost 56-22 to top-seeded Wellington-Napoleon, which beat the Bluejays in last year’s District 15 semifinals.
With just four active seniors most of the year, West Platte (2-20) struggled while developing behind freshman point guard Phillip Pattison. Jonah Vandel, Nick Miller, Quinn Johnson, Alec Carson and Seth Eagen will all graduate for the Bluejays, who lost eight straight to end a difficult season.
Higdon, Miller and Johnson were all starters, while Eagen missed most of the season with an injury.
Mid-Buchanan 49, North Platte 35
The Panthers finished 1-6 in the KCI Conference after a loss Tuesday, Feb. 14 in Faucett, Mo.
French did almost all the scoring for North Platte, finishing with 15 points and seven of the Panthers’ 16 shots made from the floor. Mid-Buchanan led 28-16 at halftime before French helped North Platte draw closer with six points in the third quarter.
Mid-Buchanan scored just four points in the third quarter before holding on to the win.
Hamilton 74, West Platte 30
The Bluejays ended up winless in KCI play after a loss Tuesday, Feb. 14 in Weston, Mo.
Nick Miller scored seven, including a first quarter 3-pointer, for West Platte, which trailed 38-13 at halftime. Alec Carson added six points in the third quarter of the loss.
Northland Christian 59, West Platte 51
The Bluejays topped the 50-point mark for just the fourth time this season Wednesday, Feb. 15 in Weston, Mo.
Northland Christian had only five players and finished the game with four after one fouled out. Vandel put up 11 of his 15 points in the first half to help keep pace with the Trailblazers, who led just 25-24 at halftime.
Brayden Cogan added a season-high 13 points with a pair of 3s, while Miller had 11 points and three 3s for West Platte in the loss.
University Academy 66 West Platte 45
Nine different players scored for the Bluejays in their home finale Thursday, Feb. 16 in Weston, Mo.
Miller and Vandel led the way with seven points apiece, while Grant Eagen — a senior out most of the year with a torn ACL — appeared and scored five in the fourth quarter. Gavin Raney also had five for West Platte, which trailed 33-20 at halftime.