With a couple of victories early in the week by their teams, NRHEG basketball fans will find themselves busy nearly every night cheering on their Panthers in the playoffs.

Monday night the Panther boys open the Section 2AA playoffs with a home game against Blue Earth Area (5-18), who they just beat 57-36 on February 21. Game time is 7PM on Kat Kountry 105FM from the NRHEG gym. The second-seeded Panthers (24-2) started the season on a 17-game winning streak then lost games to top 20 ranked Waseca, a AAA team, and Gopher Conference co-champion Waterville-Elysian-Morristown.

The winner advances to Thursday, March 9, at 7:45PM at Mankato East High School against the winner of third-seed Maple River and Lake Crystal-Wellcome-Memorial for the south subsection semifinals. Top-seed WEM (21-3), winner of 18 straight, opens with Medord on Monday night and St. James plays at Fairmont. Jordan, who WEM beat this season, is the top seed in the north subsection.

The NRHEG girls (23-5) have won their past 16 games, but had to come from behind against WEM on Friday in the Section 2AA south subsection semifinals. The Panthers trailed at halftime but pulled away for a 49-34 win. The Panthers face Blue Earth Area (15-12) Tuesday at 6PM in the south subsection championship at Taylor Center at Minnesota State University-Mankato on Kat Kountry 105FM. NRHEG topped the Buccaneers 62-43 February 21. The winner advances to the Section 2AA final Friday, March 10, at 8PM at Taylor Center against the winner of No. 4AA Norwood-Young America and Glencoe-Silver Lake.

Roy Koenig/Townsquare Media

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