COUNCIL BLUFFS — Before Travis Miller could help Council Bluffs St. Albert advance to Tuesday's Class 1-A, District 16 semifinals, he had to go downtown.
The 6-foot-3 senior guard made seven 3-pointers and finished with 27 points in the Falcons' district opener against Tri-Center. The Falcons made 11 3-pointers as a team on their way to an easy 66-39 victory over the Trojans.
The strong offensive showing was a good sign for the Falcons. They closed the regular season on a three-game losing streak, failing to score more than 48 points in each loss.
Miller scored a combined 24 points in those losses. He focused on his shooting mechanics in practice, and it paid off against Tri-Center.
"I've been working in practice lately about getting all of the form aspects right and getting my feet faced towards the basket and facing the hoop," he said. "They finally went in today."
Miller's big night pushed the Falcons into Tuesday's semifinals, where they'll face West Monona (11-12) at 6:30 p.m. in Mapleton.
The Falcons earned that opportunity with a strong second quarter in which they outscored Tri-Center 27-12 to take a commanding 46-26 halftime lead. St. Albert made 10 of 19 field goals in the quarter, including 6 of 13 3-pointers. Miller had 12 points in the quarter, and sophomore Tyler Blaha scored eight of his 11 points, including a momentum-swinging three-point play as part of an 11-4 run to start the second.
"Tonight, I thought once Travis got it going, we kind of started to feed off that," St. Albert coach Dale Scott said. "We had a couple of flurry possessions."
Miller erased any thought of a Tri-Center comeback by scoring the first five points of the third quarter to push the lead to 25. St. Albert held Tri-Center to 13 second-half points.
"We really focused on the first three minutes of the second half," Scott said. "We came out and had great intensity defensively."
Kaleb Harrison was the only Trojan to finish in double figures with 12 points.
Tri-Center will lose nine seniors from its roster, but four starters return for coach Chad Harder next season.
"I don't think anybody was beating St. Albert tonight," Harder said. "It was a six-point game, and then all of the sudden, it was a 15-, 20-point game"
BOYER VALLEY 58, WOODBINE 53
Boyer Valley limited Woodbine to five points over the final 4:19 of the fourth quarter to pull out a Class 1-A, District 16 quarterfinal victory.
Woodbine pulled within 50-48 on a Kevin Lee 3, but the Tigers failed to score again until less than a minute remained in regulation. Boyer Valley stretched the lead to 58-50 with an 8-2 run.
Jalen Malone led Boyer Valley with a game-high 14 points.
Ricky Coleman led four Woodbine players in double figures with 13.
Boyer Valley advances to play Maple Valley-Anthon-Oto in Tuesday's district semifinals.