The NRHEG boys basketball team is going to state for the first time. The Panthers survived a rugged Section 2AA tournament with a 65-64 win over Jordan in the finals.

NRHEG won their final three games by a combined total of eight points, as shown by the Minnesota Sports Online website. Friday's 2AA final at Taylor Center at Minnesota State University-Mankato was a tight game. The Panthers led by about eight a couple of times, but the Hubmen kept coming back. Jordan's final effort ended after a made basket with seconds to go. NRHEG was able to let time expire without having to inbound the ball. Then the celebrating began.

Panther fans might be feeling a little fatigued as the girls team just capped a state tournament consolation championship Friday afternoon at Concordia-St. Paul, with many fans attending both games. The girls team cheered on their classmates as well Friday night.

Tyler Raimann led the boys with 17 points and a monstrous blocked shot that fired up the crowd. Benji Lundberg continued his role of big points off the bench with 13. Sam Prigge hit big threes early in each half and ended with 12 points. Oakley Baker added 11.

In a post-game on-air interview, coach Pat Churchill also credited reserves Brady Agrimson for an offensive spark in the first half and Jack Schultz for his defensive efforts that allowed Raimann to take breaks. Jason Jongbloedt scored five points, including 3-for-3 at the free throw line in the second half.

NRHEG (28-2) plays in the Class AA quarterfinals Wednesday night, either at 6PM or 8PM at either Target Center or Williams Arena, according to the Minnesota State High School League. Seedings and brackets will be revealed Sunday morning.