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Having fun on the run


Tualatin pushes the tempo in 96-81 win over North Salem

by: DAN BROOD - FLOOR BURNS -- Tualatin senior Connor Scott is knocked down after shooting a three-pointer in Tuesday's game with North Salem. TUALATIN — No time to waste.

Very little time to catch your breath.

Run, press, shoot. Run, press, shoot.

It can be tiring just to watch. It.

But, for the Tualatin High School boys basketball team, it just might be the perfect system. And, on Tuesday, the Timberwolves showed how potent that system can be.

The Wolves, with their high-octane, no-slowing-down attack, ran to a 96-81 win over North Salem in a non-league game played at Tualatin High School.

“Playing at a fast pace is really fun,” said Tualatin senior Randall Tainer, who scored a game-high 27 points in the victory. “We’re not the tallest team, so we run a lot. We try to outrun the other team.”

“It’s exciting with the whole new style,” Tualatin senior Connor Scott said.

North Salem moved to 1-3 on the season with the setback. Tualatin evened its early-season mark at 2-2 with the victory.

“We’re not big, and we’re not that strong, so this is what we need to do,” Tualatin coach Rick Osborn said. “Tonight, we shot the ball well in the second half. We got them tired and started getting put-backs. The kids are playing hard. We just have to keep playing better.”by: DAN BROOD - UP FOR TWO -- Tualatin High School senior Randall Tainer goes up to the basket during the Timberwolves' game with North Salem on Tuesday. Tainer scored a game-high 27 points in the 96-81 victory.

Tualatin, with its up-tempo style, got off 86 shots from the field (making 31 of those shots, including 14 three-pointers) in the 32-minute game. The Wolves’ pressing defense also helped force the Vikings into 32 turnovers.

“We’ve got a bunch of short, fast guys who can shoot,” Tainer said. “We want to fly around and make plays.”

“I think this gives us our best shot,” Scott said. “And it’s fun. This has been my favorite year so far.”

Tualatin, put its running game into gear early in Tuesday’s game, but the Wolves struggled a bit finding their shooting touch, as they made just six of 24 shots from the field in the first quarter.

But, behind their defense, which helped force 11 turnovers, the Wolves held a 20-19 lead at the end of the period.

Tualatin began to take charge early in the second quarter.

Sophomore Steven Shockloss and junior Joey Fishback sank back-to-back three-pointers for the Wolves and junior Taylor Boos scored on a layup off a pass from senior C.J. Michael to give Tualatin a 28-19 lead with 6 minutes and 18 seconds left in the first half.

The Wolves went on to up their lead to 41-28 on a pair of free throws by Scott coming with 2:29 remaining in the second quarter.

But North Salem ended the first half with a 15-1 run, which gave the Vikings a 43-42 lead at the intermission.

North Salem then opened the third quarter with a follow-up basket by senior Nick Taussig to push its lead to 45-42. But the Wolves, and their fast-pace attack, took over from there.

Tualatin got a pair of baskets from senior Junior Okon and one each by Scott and Michael to sprint to a 50-45 advantage.

Tainer, senior Jack McDonnell, Joey Fishback, Boos all sank three-point baskets later in the quarter.

All told, Tualatin, making 11 of 21 shots from the field, outscored North Salem 30-12 in the period to take a 72-55 lead into the fourth quarter.

The Wolves then wrapped things up in the final stanza. Tainer sank three three-pointers and scored 12 points in the period while Joey Fishback and Boos each added a three-point basket, helping Tualatin run to the 96-81 final score.

“I think this was the first game where we were really comfortable,” Tainer said.

“Part of the plan is to wear the other team down,” Scott said.

Tainer sank five-three-pointers on his way to scoring 27 points in the victory. He also had a pair of steals.

Scott had 13 points to go with five assists and three steals. Michael scored 10 points. McDonnell had eight points and eight rebounds and Joey Fishback scored nine points on three three-pointers. Senior Jon Fishback had seven points, five steals and four assists.

Tualatin, which used five-for-five substitutions throughout the game, also had just 14 turnovers despite the team’s many possessions. The Wolves also made 18 of 41 shots from the field after halftime.

“We made some good adjustments and got more points around the paint in the second half,” Osborn said.

Junior Malik Leaks led North Salem with 23 points.

Prior to the win over North Salem, the Wolves fell 72-59 to Barlow in a non-league game played Friday at Tualatin.

The Wolves will be back in action Friday when they play at Southridge in a non-league game starting at 7:15 p.m.