PREPS: Carson boys top Galena 39-29, advance to play-in game

RENO - The Carson Senators have lived to play at least one more game.

Carson, facing a must-win situation, scored seven straight points in a two-minute span of the third quarter to open a double-digit lead en route to a 39-29 victory over Galena Friday night in the regular-season finale for both teams.

Carson, Galena and Damonte Ranch, which lost to Douglas, all finished with 6-10 records, and they all split their season series' against each other. Galena gets the No. 3 seed, while Damonte and Carson will play for the No. 4 seed Monday at Wooster High. A game time has yet to be determined.

"We've been in playoff mode for four games now, ever since the Spanish Springs game," Carson coach Bruce Barnes said. "It (the win) is big for the seniors.

"The big key was Chris Steele on the glass. By far this was his best game."

The senior forward finished with a double-double, scoring 12 points and pulling down 12 rebounds.

Carson entered the half with a 22-14 lead, as Tyler Collins drained a free throw and Chance Quilling had a steal and buzzer-beating layup.

After an exchange of turnovers to open the second half, Matt Cooper scored in the key, Steele drove the lane for a score and then Trey Jensen buried a 3-pointer to give the Senators a 29-16 lead with 4:19 left in the third.

"That's like 40 points in any other game," Barnes said. "To get a double-digit lead ... They run a deliberate offense and so do we, so they need time to run their sets. It plays into our hands when we have the led and it would have played into their hands if they have the lead."

Carson's lead stayed at double-digits until the Grizzlies scored five straight points bridging the third and fourth quarters, cutting the lead to 33-27 with 5:34 remaining. The teams exchanged turnovers , but a drive to the basket by Brian Barnes and a free throw by Matt Nolan got the lead to 36-27 with 1:33 left.

Poulson scored on layup with 47.2 to make it 36-29, but Collins nailed a clutch free throw and Steele drained two for the final margin of victory.

Carson scored the last 11 points of the first quarter for an 11-2 lead after the first eight minutes. Jensen had five early points and Nolan added two buckets.

Galena couldn't buy a basket in the first quarter despite dominating the boards. The Grizzlies went through a five-possession stretch where they had four multi-shot possessions and didn't score on an y of them.

Midway through the second quarter, the momentum shifted a little to the Grizzlies, who ran off six straight points to cut Carson's lead to 17-12. Caleb Wood had a 3-pointer to lead the surge. Carson scored five of the next seven to open up the aforementioned eight-point lead, 22-14, at the half.

Jensen finished with eight, Nolan five and Cooper four.

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