The 3-ball just wouldn’t fall for the Cougars when they needed it the most and the Twin River Titans improved to 17-7 with the 51-49 win over Cross County in the semifinals of the C2-8 subdistrict at York High School.

The Twin River softball team found itself on the ropes at the Class C, District 4 tournament last week. Sitting at 2-0 in the tourney with a win over Central City, the Titans (28-6) fell short in a pair of rematches with the Bison as they were eliminated from the district and had to rely on a wild-card berth.

Twenty-six points helped Stanton put an end to a 26-year state-tournament drought. The Mustangs opened with a 26-5 run before holding off a second-half surge to defeat Twin River 47-37 in the Class C2-3 district final at Central Community College here Friday, earning a berth to state for the first time since 1990.

BATTLE CREEK -- Jared Reed knocked down 5 of 6 free throws in the final 92 seconds to help finish what the Battle Creek defense started.

With four appearances in a five year span starting in 2006, Twin River established itself as a regular in the Class C state softball tournament. But for the past four years, the Titans couldn’t get back to Hastings despite continuously finishing near the top of their district. That changed this year.

Braden Schuppan entered his senior season a bigger, stronger, more experienced running back. Doniphan-Trumbull’s offensive line also returned with important experience under its belt. That has proven to be a winning combination early in the season.

In more ways than one, it was pure irony that the Class C2-6 subdistrict against Twin River came down to Battle Creek needing a free throw.

The Twin River Titan girls got all they wanted from the Cougars of Cross County in the first period, but by the final horn Thursday night at Genoa the board showed a 16-point win for the home team, 43-27.

Rebounding and making free throws are often keys to victory in the game of basketball — and those two areas were instrumental for the Twin River boys and girls basketball teams on Friday night.

Twin River used its quickness to create points off turnovers for North Bend Central as the Titans raced to a 52-37 win against the Tigers Friday in both teams’ first game of the season in North Bend.