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When North Mahaska and Montezuma get together for any sporting event there is a high level of excitement. The two teams were meeting for the third time this season with each team winning on the other team’s court. This game, with a Class 1A District 10 championship berth on the line, took place at North Mahaska.

Montezuma averaged seven 3-pointers per game but was held to just two as North Mahaska topped the Brave 46-42. The Warhawks will play Tuesday at Evans Junior High in Ottumwa to take on top-seeded Holy Trinity. The winner will play in the substate final for a state tourney berth.

North Mahaska (18-6) jumped out to a 9-0 lead and made the Braves play uphill the rest of the night. With 5 minutes 24 seconds to play in the game Montezuma took its only lead of the game 37-34. Then two NM seniors took control. Nolan Andersen and Nate Sampson each drilled 3-pointers. Junior Asher DeBoef hit a bucket sandwiched in between as NM rallied to lead 42-37.

Possibly the biggest blow was that Sampson’s trey came when the NM senior picked Monte star Brady Boulton with the ball that led to the shot. Sampson added another bucket to put the Warhawks up 44-37.

RD Keep/NM Communications
North Mahaska’s Nate Sampson clamps down on Montezuma’s Brady Boulton in the first half. Sampson limited the Braves’ leading scorer to 16 points and scored 20 od his own to guide NM past Montezuma 46-42 to advance the Class 1A District 10 final.

Boulton was able to earn a traditional 3-pointer and a bucket to close the game to 44-42. Monte called a time out with 13 seconds left. Nm had the ball and inbounded but the clock did not start. After the referees conferred NM took the ball out of bounds. NM missed a shot and the rebound was grabbed by Garrett Watts of Montezuma but he travelled. On the inbounds Andersen was fouled and he dropped two free throws for the win.
Sampson was determined his team was not going to lose.

“At the timeout we said we needed to take care of the ball,” said Sampson. “I just stood up and decided we were not going to lose.

Boulton was averaging 24 points per game but was limited to eight points in each half and no 3-pointers.
“We knew we had to keep hands in their faces,” said NM coach Seth Streebin. “We wanted to come out and set the tone and was able to do that with the quick start.

“Nate was a force on the defensive end and offensive end. He carried us on both ends.”

Sampson led all scorers with 20 points. DeBoef had a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Andersen just missed a double-double with 10 points and nine rebounds. Gabe Hora added five points.

North Mahaska held a 32-31 rebounding. They forced 19 turnovers including eight steals.

Boulton led the Braves with 16 points, six rebounds and five steals. Kohen Holland had 11 points and six rebounds.

Garrett Watts scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds.

Holy Trinity (17-5) defeated Moravia 55-29 to earn a spot in the district championship game. The game is slated for 7 p.m.