The senior goes off for 52 against Mark Morris after the Lakers win the Red Bluff Tournament

It's been a whirlwind start to the season for the Lake Oswego boys basketball team. The Lakers have had seven games already this year and are still trying to integrate players who are joining the squad late from the football team.

But it's also been an incredibly strong start for the Lakers who are undefeated, ranked No. 1 in the state by the OSAA, have the Red Bluff Tournament championship under their belts and also saw their star player break the school's single-game scoring record on Tuesday.

After competing in California last week, the Lakers traveled to Washington on Tuesday to face Mark Morris.

Hermanson had things working from the opening tip and benefited from a fast-paced start to the contest.

Lake Oswego led 28-20 after the first quarter and Hermanson was scoring from all over the court.

“Have you ever seen Kobe (Bryant) when he has it going? It was like that. He was blowing by people and scoring from the outside,” coach Mark Shoff said. Hermanson was 20-for-27 from the field in the game.

The Lakers pulled away in the second quarter, outscoring Mark Morris 23-8 in the period.

Lake Oswego's scoring efficiency took Mark Morris out of the game but the home team wasn't exactly cold from the field either.

For the game, the Monarchs drained nine three-pointers and did its best to get back into contention.

However, Hermanson was the highlight of the contest, so much so that he was electrifying the fans from the other team.

“He was just going at it and eventually the Washington fans started rooting for him,” Shoff said.

Late in the game, Hermanson was approaching the school record of 50 points set by current NBA star Kevin Love, who hit that number twice.

Hermanson, who was perfect from the foul line in the game, finished with 52 as the Lakers secured an 87-52 victory.

The win came on the heels of the team's championship at the annual Red Bluff Tournament in California.

The Lakers opened the tournament against Enterprise, a strong team from Redding. Enterprise would give the Lakers their stiffest challenge of the tournament and actually led 18-14 after the first quarter.

But Lake Oswego was quick to right the ship, tightening the screws on defense to turn a four-point deficit into an eight-point lead at the half.

“Teams are battling us hard in the first quarter. We're getting everyone's best shot,” Shoff said.

Enterprise wouldn't go away in the second half and stayed within striking distance until the final minutes. But Lake Oswego was too difficult to stop on offense and the team held on for a 71-60 victory.

Hermanson led the way again for the Lakers with 31 points.

That allowed the Lakers to advance against Helix in the semifinals. Helix hung tough for the first eight minutes and also held a slim lead after the opening quarter.

“They were hitting some incredibly tough shots and we just told the guys they were bound to slow down,” Shoff said.

Helix cooled off considerably in the second quarter and the Lakers started to roll. Lake Oswego outscored Helix 57-14 for the remainder of the game, turning it into a rout.

Hermanson had 28 points in the game, outscoring Helix's entire team, and Connor Griffin chipped in 17.

In the finals, Lake Oswego took on an El Camino team from Oceanside that was 8-0 heading into the contest.

The Lakers got off to a better start, particularly on defense and jumped out to a 17-9 lead.

El Camino threw a box and one defense at Hermanson to try and slow him down but the rest of the lake Oswego team filled in admirably.

“Last year if teams were stopping Calvin and Jason Luhnow wasn't hitting, we were in trouble. This year we have three or four guys who are stepping up,” Shoff said.

Ten different players scored in the game for Lake Oswego as the team slowly wore El Camino down. The Lakers led by double digits at the half and didn't let up en route to a 60-38 win.

Hermanson led all scorers again with 20 points while Daniel Verbug had 10 and Colin Caslick had eight.

Lake Oswego now has a few days off until the annual Les Schwab Invitational which starts Dec. 26. Lake Oswego opens play against Sunset.

“There's still some things we need to tighten up defensively but we're playing our game right now and being pretty disciplined,” Shoff said.

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