CELINA — The final weeks of the season saw the Bobcats in as tight a playoff race as their could possibly be.


And when Celina’s year came down to a win-or-go home contest, freshman Karson Stastny rose to the occasion to get his team into the playoffs.


The Bobcats, Princeton and Aubrey all tied for third place in the 11-4A standings and one team was going to be left out. After Celina lost against Princeton, Stastny scored 18 points to eliminate Aubrey.


“I think it was harder the second time,” Stastny said. “You had to win or you weren’t going to make it.”


He scored at a prolific clip, averaging 25.1 points, 6.4 assists and 5.8 rebounds. Stastny was the district Offensive Player of the Year and earned all-tournament honors twice during the season.


“It went like I thought it would go,” Stastny said. “My game is mainly mid-range, on the perimeter.”


Basketball is in his blood — his dad, Bubba, is his coach while older sisters Presley and K.J. were a part of the Lady Bobcats’ Class 3A state runner-up team in 2012.


For his efforts, Stastny has been named the Herald Democrat All-Texomaland Boys Basketball Newcomer of the Year for the 2016-17 season.