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LO boys wrap up Schwab impressively, taking third


Heading into the Les Schwab Invitational, Lake Oswego coach Mark Shoff knew that, realistically, going 2-2 would be a pretty good showing for a team that has been sorely lacking practice time and recently lost one of its best players for the season.

So for the team to go 3-1 and take fifth place at the state's most competitive tournament was a huge achievement.

"I feel really good that the mistakes we're making are ones that we can clean up in practice," Shoff said.

After winning their opener against Benson, the Lakers took on defending state champion Jesuit and, in many aspects, outplayed the Crusaders.

Lake Oswego got out to a 6-0 lead, getting a three-pointer from Colin Caslick early in the game but Jesuit answered with a 9-0 run to claim the lead.

A three-pointer from Daniel Verburg at the buzzer made it 10-9 Lake Oswego after the first quarter.

In the second period, Verbug and Calvin Hermanson each hit early three-pointers but Lake Oswego turnovers in transition allowed Jesuit to hang around.

The Crusaders went on a nice run to close the first half, regaining the lead 25-22.

Jesuit had opportunities to extend its lead in the second half but shot poorly from the foul line all game long.

The Crusaders made it a point of emphasis to take the ball out of Hermanson's hands as much as possible but Jason Luhnow picked up the scoring slack with a pair of three-pointers.

Second-chance points hurt the Lakers all night. Jesuit dominated on the offensive glass and it helped the team build a seven-point lead.

But a three-pointer by T.J. Dorado and a late tip-in from Hermanson cut the deficit to 39-37 with one quarter to play.

Lake Oswego's defense was stellar early in the fourth quarter but the team struggle to take advantage as the turnovers continued to mount.

But Luhnow knocked down two more three-pointers to give the Lakers a 43-41 lead.

Hermanson also started to find success inside with a pair of buckets.

Jesuit tightened its defense in the paint in the closing minutes, coming up with some big blocks and rebounding well to take a 50-47 lead.

Hermanson was then fouled on a three-point attempt and hit all three shots to tie the game with 17 seconds left.

But the Lakers committed a foul on the other end and trailed by two with 9.6 seconds remaining. The team could only muster a contested three-pointer at the buzzer and lost 52-50.

In consolation, Lake Oswego put together two more nice outings.

Against Riverside, Calif., the Lakers got off to a hot start from beyond the arc.

Hermanson hit his first three three-point attempts and Luhnow knocked down another.

Hermanson was also fouled shooting a three as the Lakers built an early lead, going up 24-14.

Two more buckets from Hermanson early in the second quarter extended the lead to 30-14 as Riverside was frustrated.

Riverside finally started to heat up late in the half, cutting the lead to five points and claiming some momentum.

Riverside continued to put pressure on Lake Oswego in the third and would cut the lead to three points in the fourth quarter but a big basket by Cory Coombe pushed the advantage to five again.

The Lakers began to grow cold on offense and Riverside would eventually take a 61-60 lead with less than a minute to go.

However, Lake Oswego would close on an 8-0 run to put the contest away and move into the fifth-place game against Yates, Texas. Hermanson would end the game with 30 points.

"(Riverside's) coach was telling me after the game that he thought his guys might have gotten a bit big-headed after playing in a big tournament but they found out that there's some really good basketball in Oregon too," Shoff said.

Yates had the advantage for most of the game, using its size and athleticism to score in bunches against Lake Oswego but the Lakers cracked down on defense in the final minutes to muster a terrific comeback.

Yates would go up by 10 in the first half before the Lakers cut the deficit to two at the break.

Lake Oswego would tie the game early in the third quarter but a late run would put Yates up 63-55 with one quarter to play.

Yates would lead 72-62 with just over four minutes to play in the game but wouldn't score again.

Hermanson had a pair of buckets and then a three-pointer to make it a one-point game with 1:39 to play.

Yates also had two tough offensive fouls for turnovers, keeping Lake Oswego in the game.

The Lakers got the ball with less than 30 seconds to play, inbounding it to Caslick.

He beat his man on a drive and scored while Yates failed to get off a shot on the other end.

On Tuesday Lake Oswego would host Jesuit again and come away with a similar result in a 65-59 loss.

The Lakers played evenly with the Crusaders but turnovers and offensive rebounds hurt the home team.

"I feel like these guys are so close to being really good and I think by the end of the month we might get there," Shoff said.

Lake Oswego is still No. 2 in the OSAA RPI rankings and will face Sprague and Lincoln before opening up league play next week against Oregon City.