The state title game absence was a short one for Iowa City West.
Tanner Lohaus made sure of that on Friday.
Lohaus tipped in a Devontae Lane miss as the buzzer sounded to give West High a 61-59 win over Cedar Falls in a Class 4A semifinal on Friday at Wells Fargo Arena.
The win sends the Trojans back to the state title game for the fourth time in five seasons.
A year after having its run of three straight 4A state titles snapped with a semifinal loss to North Scott, third-ranked West High (21-4) will face West Des Moines Valley (22-3) in the championship game at 8:05 p.m. Saturday.
West High defeated West Des Moines Valley 57-45 for the 4A championship in its last state title game appearance in 2014.
West High appeared headed to overtime on Friday when Connor McCaffery missed the front end of a one-and-one with 4.2 seconds left and Cedar Falls got the rebound.
However, Lane stole the outlet pass and missed a 17-foot jumper from the baseline.
The 6-foot-7 Lohaus batted the ball towards the basket and in as the horn expired to give West High the win.
Wali Parks led West High with 17 points, McCaffery added 14 and Lane finished with 13 for West High (21-4).
A.J. Green had 24 points for Cedar Falls (20-5), which had an 11-game winning streak snapped with the loss.