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Lakeridge pulls away late behind 37 points from Reggie Oliver

The Lakeridge boys basketball team moved to 12-2 on the season Tuesday and picked up an impressive 78-61 win over top-10 ranked David Douglas in the process.

Playing one of its better opponents of the year, Lakeridge used a big second half to pull away from the Scots, giving the team a boost heading into its first league game against Oregon City this Friday.

David Douglas had the hot hand collectively in the first half, draining multiple jumpers and building a 40-37 lead at the break.

But Lakeridge had weathered the storm and its offense kept the team in the game.

“They hit some shots and we were just trading baskets for a while,” coach Dane Walker said.

The Pacers then made some adjustments in the locker room and had more success slowing the Scots down.

It also helped that point guard Reggie Oliver went off. In what has already been a terrific start to the season, Oliver put together maybe his best performance of the year, scoring 37 points and putting on a shooting exhibition.

Oliver went 8-for-9 from behind the arc for the game and David Douglas had no answer for him.

“Reggie really does a nice job choosing times when he can take over and we've been getting solid contributions from all over the roster,” Walker said.

Defensively, Lakeridge simplified things and stuck to man coverage. The Pacers' athleticism hurt David Douglas, which suddenly wasn't able to find areas to exploit for easy hoops.

Lakeridge was able to make a run late in the third quarter and then turned on the after burners in the final period, turning what had been a tight contest into a double-digit win.

David Douglas also struggled mightily from the field in the final quarter after its quick start to the game.

With the victory, Lakeridge moved into the top-10 of the OSAA rankings and has put together one of its best starts in a handful of seasons.

But Walker knows there is lots of room for improvement.

“We haven't been completely healthy since January. We're still missing a starter in Bryce Anderson,” Walker said.

Lakeridge has been a team that has been explosive offensively at times this year but Walker continues to stress defense, knowing it's the key in determining how successful the Pacers will be down the stretch.

“We're a little more free this year and we can score the basketball. Everyone in our league can score but at some point you need a stop,” Walker said.

Lakeridge was competitive in the TRL last season but came up short in a handful of tight ball games. Walker hopes the team can get over that hurdle this season and live up to its billing as one of the more competitive squads in the state.

“Our expectations haven't really changed. Ultimately, you want to get to the final eight and be one of those teams in the last fight,” Walker said.

The Pacers host Oregon City Friday at 6 p.m.

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