Boys basketball: Wilsonville holds off Sherwood to get the win in the NWOC clash
by: JAIME VALDEZ, ON THE DRIVE — Sherwood senior Travis Lutes heads up court against Wilsonville.

SHERWOOD - They started slow - and found a way to come back.

But there was no way for the Sherwood boys basketball team to recover from a late dry spell Tuesday against Wilsonville.

The Bowmen fell behind 16-5 in the first quarter and trailed 30-20 at halftime only to claw back for a 40-40 tie midway through the final frame. The comeback ended then and there though as the Wildcats went on a 12-0 run to pull out a 52-43 win at Sherwood High School.

'That's how we usually are - we come back at halftime and come out and play the best we can,' said Sherwood wing Colin Wester, who had 11 points. 'But it kills us in the fourth quarter. We get tired on defense and lose our legs.'

And their shooting paid the price. After opening the fourth quarter by hitting 3 of 4 shots to force a 40-40 tie on a 10-foot baseline jumper by Elliott Loucks with 4 minutes, 20 seconds left, Sherwood missed its next nine shots.

The Wildcats, which took just four shots in the fourth - making three - regained the lead when Isaac Wilson buried a 3-pointer in the left corner. Sherwood kept misfiring and Wilsonville kept converting from the free throw line, making 9 of 10 attempts in the final 1:36 to clinch the win.

'We didn't execute down the stretch on offense,' said Bowmen wing Connor Rumpf, who had a game-high 18 points. 'Every team in our league will give us a tough game every night. It's a matter of who does the little things every night.'

The Wildcats did early and that forced Sherwood, which fell to 2-4 in the Northwest Oregon Conference and 8-8 overall, to play catch-up much of the game. Wilsonville, which improved to 4-2 in the NWOC and 12-5 overall, scored the first six points before Rumpf's 3-pointer in the left corner got the Bowmen on the scoreboard with 4:05 left in the first.

But the Wildcats followed with an 8-0 run that included a pair of 3-pointers by Shane Wardle, including a banked-in 'three' for a 14-3 lead with 1:58 left.

Wilsonville frustrated Sherwood with an active defense, forcing the Bowmen into more turnovers (7) than shots (5) in the first quarter.

'They come out more physical then we did,' Rumpf said. 'It took us awhile to realize the refs weren't going to call much.'

Once they did, the Bowmen began to climb back into the game. Sherwood tightened its defense in the second quarter, forcing six Wildcat turnovers in the frame to get back into the game. Travis Lutes' three-point play sparked a 7-0 run that included a Lutes' layin and a pull-up jumper from Rumpf that closed the gap to 21-15 with 4:25 left in the first half.

'Sometimes we come out and slack off and then realize we have to go all out,' Wester said. 'We started stepping it up on defense.'

After a banked-in shot by Wilson, who had 16 points, Rumpf hit a 3-pointer from the top of the arc. Wester later hauled in a long pass off a Ian Donovan steal and adjusted under the hoop for a layin to make it 25-20.

But Wilsonville got a Wardle 3-pointer with 0:02 left for a 30-20 halftime lead.

Still, Sherwood wasn't about to go away. The Wildcats struck first in the second half on a Jon Adrian layin before the Bowmen outscored them 13-4 the rest of the third quarter led by Rumpf's nine points.

'We know we're not out of any game with our ability to score,' Rumpf said. 'It's just a matter of getting stops.'

Rumpf swished a 3-pointer on the top of the arc off Lutes' inbounds pass then later drove to the hoop for two more points to make it 32-25.Wester added a pull-up shot and Rumpf banked in a 10-footer to close Sherwood to 34-29.

After Wilsonville's first points in more than three minutes, Rumpf drove the lane and leaned in for a field goal and Kole Krieger dropped in another with 0:16 left in the third to cut the Wildcats' lead to 36-33.

That vanished 30 seconds into the fourth quarter when Donovan got open off a screen and buried a 3-pointer for a 36-36 tie. Wilsonville scored the next four points only to have Sherwood even the score (40-40) after a Wester offensive rebound and putback and Loucks' field goal with 4:20 left.

But the Bowmen didn't score again until it was far too late when Wester banked in a deep 3-pointer with 0:08 left to end Wilsonville's 12-0 run.

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