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The Lakers' victory lifts them into a three-way tie for first in Three Rivers play

REVIEW FILE PHOTO - Lake Oswego junior guard Josh Angle (shown here against Lakeridge) and the Lakers knocked off Tualatin 57-49 on Friday.The Lake Oswego boys basketball team is right where it wants to be.

Now, approaching the halfway point of the 2017-18 Three Rivers League season, the ninth-ranked Lakers are 5-1 and tied for first place with both No. 7 West Linn and No. 16 Tigard.

Lake Oswego took the latest step toward the top of the standings on Friday when it knocked off Tualatin 57-49 on Friday, Jan. 19, at Tualatin High School.

"The biggest thing was our guys got to show some road toughness," said Lake Oswego coach Marshall Cho. "The guys were very locked in. They stuck to our game plan defensively."

The two teams punched and counterpunched through the game's first three quarters, with the Lakers leading 15-10 after the first period, the Timberwolves rallying for a 20-20 tie at halftime, and Tualatin then taking a 34-32 edge into the final stanza.

But Lake Oswego held the upper hand when it counted most, outscoring Tualatin 25-15 in the decisive fourth quarter to pull away.

The Lakers opened the final period with a 7-0 run, getting two Shawn Elliott free throws, a basket by Josh Angle, an Angle foul shot and two Brandon Roberts free throws to push ahead 39-34.

The Timberwolves answered immediately with three points from Chris Freese and a hoop from Alexis Angeles to close within 41-39.

The Lakers' lead was still just 44-42 after another three points from Angeles — the reigning TRL Player of the Year led all scorers with 24 points — but Lake Oswego took control there. The Lakers scored eight straight points to extend their lead to 52-42, with Angle burying a 3-pointer, Wayne McKinney III scoring from the field, Angle hitting one free throw and Elliott another two foul shots in that stretch.

The Wolves tried to battle back with seven more points from Angeles — he scored his team's final 12 on Friday — but the Lakers sealed their win with another Elliott free throw, a Sam Abere hoop, two Angle foul shots and a pair of key steals by McKinney and Schilling to end it.

"It's really rewarding," Cho said. "It's the third year of the program but a lot of the guys have been with (Lake Oswego basketball) longer than that."

For the game, Angle and Elliott paced the Lakers with 13 points each, Abere added 12 and Schilling had eight. For Tualatin, after Angeles' 24, John Miller tacked on 15 points.

Next up, the Lakers host Tigard at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 26, then play at Newberg at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 30.

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