Lake Oswego boys explode to beat Westview 67-41
The end came quickly for the Westview boys basketball team on Wednesday night.
The 27th-ranked Wildcats, playing at No. 6 Lake Oswego in the first round of the Class 6A state playoffs, led the Lakers by a point with three minutes left in the third quarter.
But when Lake Oswego finally shifted into top gear, Westview simply had no answer. The Lakers ripped off a 24-0 scoring run over the next six minutes and used that stretch to speed past the Cats 67-41.
"That's what we're always trying to do with our tempo, make other teams try to stay with us because eventually they're going to get tired and that's when we take advantage and hit hot streaks like that," said senior post Shawn Elliott, who finished with 13 points on 6 of 11 shooting from the floor and a 1 of 2 day at the foul line, along with four steals and two assists.
"We've had a lot of tough battles with a lot of good teams so it was a close game, but we held our composure, came out in the second half with adjustments from the coaching staff and it worked," added Lake Oswego junior guard Josh Angle, who led all scorers with 22 points, 15 of them in the decisive fourth quarter, on 7 of 12 shooting from the field (including five 3-pointers), a 3 of 3 day at the foul line, four rebounds, three steals and three assists.
With the win, the Three Rivers League-champion Lakers won for the 11h straight time, improved to 20-5 overall and advanced to the second round of the playoffs; the Lakers will host No. 11 Lincoln (16-9 overall after a third-place finish in the Portland Interscholastic League) at 7 p.m. Saturday with a trip to the state tournament on the line.
Westview, meanwhile, saw its season end at 14-11 after a fourth-place finish in the Metro League.
While disappointed with the loss, the Wildcats were proud of the way they'd challenged Lake Oswego and just wished they'd carried it even further.
"It's hard because we were so close for ... three quarters," said Westview senior post Matt White, who led his team with 14 points on 6 of 6 shooting from the field and a 2 of 2 day at the foul line, along with seven rebounds. "I wish I could tell you what happened after that, but I really can't."
"They're a great team. They made the plays down the stretch," added Westview junior guard Kobe Newton, who had seven points on 3 of 8 shooting from the field (including one "three"), four rebounds and three steals. "In the fourth quarter, they went on that run and … everybody panicked and we got out of what got us that lead late in the third quarter."
The Lakers got first-quarter baskets by five different players (including a 3-pointer by junior Brandon Roberts) to grab an 11-6 lead at the end of the period, with Westview staying close behind two baskets by senior Jack Poling.
The Wildcats stepped up in the second quarter, though, and pieced together a 13-6 run over the first 3:32 of the frame to lead 19-17 when Shasank Bonthala took a Newton pass and scored inside. Poling added another four points in the second and Newton five, including a 3-pointer.
But the Lakers answered at the end of the half with a fast break hoop by Angle, two foul shots from junior Grant Fuson, an Angle leaner in the lane and a pullup from the top of the key by Wayne McKinney III that gave Lake Oswego a 25-21 lead at the break.
Westview rallied again in the third, this time behind White, who hit five straight shots from the field and both his foul shots to pile up 12 points in the quarter, the last two of those on a turnaround, step-back jumper from the right wing that gave his team a 35-34 lead with 3:32 to go in the quarter.
"When halftime came, I went to the locker room and my coach … gave me the rundown of what I needed to do and I just focused up," White said. "I just played my (backside) off, basically."
That, however, was the end of the offensive highlights for Westview. Lake Oswego turned up the heat defensively, and over the next 6:01, outscored the Wildcats 24-0, holding Westview to 0 of 4 shooting in that stretch while also forcing 11 turnovers.
"We had a lot of intensity and we kind of brought that out at the end of the third quarter," said Roberts, who had eight points and three steals. "We came out with intensity and we were thinking it's 0-0 and we needed to get the 'W' right there."
On the other end of the court, the Lakers got "threes" from McKinney and Angle and a Roberts free throw to close out the third period with a 41-35 lead, then really caught fire.
In the fourth, while the Wildcats turned the ball over on six of their first eight possessions, Angle just took over. First, he took a McKinney pass and buried a 3-pointer from the left wing that he turned into a four-point play. Next, senior teammate J.R. Schilling made a steal and fed Angle for another "three" — which he followed with a windmill arm pump to fire up the Laker crowd.
After that, Angle stole the ball from Westview senior Eric Anderson near midcourt, broke to the basket and laid it off the right side of the glass to Schilling for a two-handed dunk. And finally, two possessions later, he drilled yet another 3-pointer from the right corner for a 55-35 lead with 5:25 left in the game.
Roberts added another foul shot and Elliott a steal and breakaway hoop to cap that 24-0 run at 58-35 with 4:31 left to play.
"We did a great job against (Angle) in the first three quarters, but then it was just him getting hot," Newton said. "I think the atmosphere of the crowd kind of got to some of our guys when we started losing him. He was getting shots and he was hitting them. You can't do much when a guy hits a three right in your face."
"I've got to give it to my teammates because we play so hard on the defensive end that every other team is going to get worn down," Angle said. "We have 14 guys who come out and give their best effort every single night, so by the time we reached the late third and early fourth quarters, other teams are gassed and we are just hitting our stride."
For Lake Oswego, McKinney and Schilling added seven points each in the win, and Jamison six for Westview.