The Decorah boys' basketball team (15-6) tested the playoff waters and almost defeated Class 3A No. 3 Monticello (19-0) on Thursday evening in Oelwein. In the end, it was the panthers who survived 47-46.
The Vikings led much of the game, parting 11-10 after the first eight minutes. Decorah stayed ahead in the second quarter and went into halftime at a 24-17 lead. The Panthers were able to make up their deficit in the third game to 33-32 and leave the Vikes behind with 15-9. The third-placed Monticello Panthers fought their way forward and defeated the NEIC champions with 47:46.
It was a 14 point night for Charlie Robinson when Joe Bockman knocked 12 down. Freshman Trey McCain lost another eight points to the Vikes. With four points apiece were Briggs Duwe, Jacob Pipho and Carson Wemark.
Decorah opened the postseason on Monday at home against Independence (8-10) in Class 3A Substate 3 action. Full coverage will be posted online and in Decorah's public statement on Thursday.