TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) Kimberly got off to a hot start, leading 15-6 after the first quarter.
Brant Etherington who came off the bench, led the charge. He gave the Bulldogs a boost in the first half with several three pointers before going down with a rolled ankle early on in the second half. He led the team with 14 points.
Kimberly led 34-16 at halftime and withstood Buhl's late run to cut the deficit to two points. Carter Kelsey posted a game-high 24 points in the loss.
The Bulldogs won 54-47.
"Even though we didn't have a lot of starters coming back, we had some kids that got some experience. They expanded their roles and embracing the new leadership they had to bring," Kimberly head coach Daren Garey explained.
Kimberly opens the state tournament with Parma on Thursday at 3 p.m. The Panthers boast a 20-4 record on the season. The location of the 3A state tournament is Meridian High School.
Meanwhile, Buhl travels to Pocatello on Saturday for a state play-in game against Marsh Valley at 1 p.m. The Eagles have a record of 16-10 on the year.