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Big third quarter propels LO boys over Pacers

Drew Todd has a huge second half for the Lakers as they top Lakeridge again

MATTHEW SHERMAN - Lake Oswego's Andrew Meskel finds a lane and heads to the basket during the Lakers' victory over Lakeridge last week. Both teams have just two games remaining in the regular season.Lakeridge had Lake Oswego in a precarious situation on Friday, saddling its leading scorer with two early fouls and taking a three-point halftime lead on the Lakers' home court.

But a huge victory wasn't to be. The Lakers' Drew Todd returned to action in the second half and scored 21 of his 23 points, leading Lake Oswego to a 60-52 victory.

Todd was brilliant in the third and fourth quarter, jumpstarting an otherwise stagnant Lake Oswego offense and moving the Lakers into a tie for second place in the Three Rivers League.

“I knew I had to make up for getting those early fouls and carry some of the load,” Todd said.

Lakeridge was fired up for its rematch with the Pacers as it hoped to improve their bubble position for the postseason. The Pacers jumped out to a 9-3 lead and got Todd to pick up his second foul less than two minutes into the game.

Lakeridge led 13-7 before Laker Oswego closed the opening quarter on a 6-0 run, getting back-to-back baskets from Brett Graver to tie the game.

The Pacers' defense did well to slow Lake Oswego's offense and Lakeridge would regain the lead in the third period. Josh Spurgeon scored nine of his team's first 11 points and the Pacers would lead 25-22 at the half.

But Lake Oswego would turn the tide early in the third period. The Lakers opened 17-4 run with 11 of those points from from Todd.

“We're always confident. I think we were just able to get into a rhythm,” Todd said.

The Pacers could only muster six points in the period and fell behind by 10 heading into the fourth quarter.

Lakeridge continued to fight in the fourth period as Immanuel Allen took over as the focal point of the offense. He had 10 of his 16 points in the final stanza.

But Lake Oswego was able to keep the Pacers at arm's length, hitting free throws to fend off any comeback attempt. Todd had eight of the Lakers' first 10 points in the quarter.

Lakeridge was able to cut the lead to seven on a bucket from Nate Ninteman with under a minute to play but couldn't draw any closer.

“We have to come prepared to play everyone in this league because of how even everyone is. I think we're playing our best basketball right now,” Todd said.

Lake Oswego followed the big victory with a tough loss to Tualatin on Tuesday, a loss that drops the Lakers into a three-way tie for third place in the TRL.

Lakeridge fell to No. 1 West Linn and will need a strong showing in its final two games and Canby and Newberg to solidify a postseason appearance.