WAHOO, Neb. — Grant Lahm’s torrid shooting from behind the 3-point line in the first half put Columbus Scotus in front.
His work from the free-throw line in the final two minutes secured the road win for the Shamrocks.
Lahm hit 8 of 8 from the line in the final 1:52 as he finished with a game-high 29 points and helped Scotus, ranked sixth in Class C-1, to a 66-63 win over No. 4 Wahoo.
Lahm said he felt comfortable at the line as the Shamrocks were able to hold off Wahoo’s late rally.
“I’ve been doing it since I was a kid. My dad always has me out shooting free throws,” said Lahm, a 6-foot junior left-hander who hit five of his six 3-pointers in the game’s first 12 minutes. “I just tell myself this is where I want to be. I want to be the person shooting free throws at the end of the game.”
Lahm’s free throws capped a strong fourth quarter for the Shamrocks, who led most of the night before trailing 44-42 after three quarters. Scotus went 7 of 11 from the field and 8 of 10 from the line in a fourth quarter that had its ebbs and flows.
“I’m really proud of my kids,” Scotus coach Jeff Ohnoutka said. “We showed a lot of toughness tonight.”
Scotus hit 7 of 10 3-pointers in the first half against Wahoo’s 1-3-1 zone and led by as many as 12 midway through the second quarter.
But the Warriors scored the final eight points of the first half to pull within three, and they finally took their first lead at 42-40 with 3:30 left in the third quarter when senior Ben Scheef scored inside. Scheef led Wahoo with 23 points.
After trailing 44-42, Scotus regained control by scoring the first 11 points of the fourth quarter. Garrit Shanle hit a pair of baseline 15-footers, Miles Putnam hit an 18-footer, Cody Mroczek hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key and then Derek Kaslon added a layup when Scotus broke Wahoo’s press.
“We got stops and we hit shots,” Lahm said of the fourth quarter. “Everyone was hitting shots. Cody hit a big shot, Garrit hit a few big ones. And then it was all about the defensive stops. Coach got us pumped about defense.”
Kaslon’s basket gave Scotus a 53-44 lead with 4:30 left, but Wahoo answered with eight straight points to pull within 53-52 with 3:26 left.
Scotus, though, never lost the lead. Mroczek hit a 3-pointer — the Shamrocks’ 10th of the night — on its next possession. Wahoo never had a possession in the final three minutes that would have tied it. The Warriors committed five of their 13 turnovers in the fourth quarter.
Scotus snapped a two-game losing streak as it improved to 16-4. Ohnoutka said regaining confidence on offense was key as his team had gone 1 of 16 from 3-point territory when it lost 52-40 to Wahoo Neumann last Friday.
Wahoo (17-4) dropped its second straight game after losing 74-67 to Grand Island Central Catholic on Saturday. Wahoo has lost the only four times it has allowed at least 60 points this season.
Columbus Scotus (16-4) ....... 17 14 11 24—66
At Wahoo (17-4) ................... 12 16 16 19—63
CS: Nate Ebner 2-4 0-2 4, Derek Kaslon 2-5 1-3 5, Miles Putnam 5-8 0-1 10, Cody Mroczek 4-7 0-0 12, Grant Lahm 7-16 9-9 29, Garrit Shanle 3-4 0-0 6, Tyler Morton 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 23-47 10-15 66.
W: Ben Scheef 6-10 11-13 23, Josh Langemeier 1-4 1-2 3, Jake Scheef 5-10 3-5 15, Jake Ruzicka 1-3 0-0 3, Gavin Iversen 4-8 2-4 11, Colin Nadrchal 4-7 0-1 8. Totals 21-42 17-25 63.
3-point goals: CS 10-20 (Lahm 6-12, Mroczek 4-5, Putnam 0-1, Morton 0-2); W 4-14 (J. Scheef 2-5, Iversen 1-2, Ruzicka 1-3, B. Scheef 0-2, Langemeier 0-2). Rebounds: CS 27 (Kaslon 11); W 25 (Nadrchal 5). Turnovers: CS 13, W 13. Total fouls: CS 20, W 21. Fouled out: Shanle, Ruzicka, Langemeier. Technical fouls: None.