Lakeridge girls see Canby pull away to win 44-34
Momentum was unpredictable and erratic as possible during the Canby at Lakeridge girls basketball game on Friday, Jan. 17.
The Pacers blasted out to a 10-point lead at the start of the contest, fell into a pitched battle with the Cougars for the next 1 1/2 quarters, then saw Canby take over after that.
In the end, the Cougars put together an 11-0 scoring edge over a span of 6 minutes, 45 seconds at the end of the third quarter and start of the fourth to beat Lakeridge 44-34 at Lakeridge High School.
"We had some good plays we didn't finish and we beat ourselves up and got down," said Lakeridge sophomore guard Reese Ericson, who led her team with nine points on 3 of 9 shooting from the field (including two 3-pointers), along with four steals, three rebounds and one assist. "They made a couple shots in a row and we got in our own heads."
"I think we came out pretty strong, but then they went on a run and we sort of backed off a little bit and that carried into the second half," added Lakeridge freshman guard/wing Keelie O'Hollaren, who added seven points on 3 of 9 shooting (with two "threes"), along with six rebounds, one steal and one block. "Maybe next time, we should push through it even if they go on a run."
The victory lifted the Cougars' Three Rivers League record to 1-1 and took its overall mark to 7-4. Lakeridge, meanwhile, fell to 0-2 in TRL play and 8-4 overall.
"We have the goal of winning league and going to state so we knew we had to push through the fatigue and whatever we had going on in our minds, just cancel that out and focus on winning the game," said Canby freshman guard Allie Mead, who finished with 10 points on 5 of 10 shooting from the field, along with four assists, three rebounds and two steals.
"We all knew at the beginning of the game that (Lakeridge) was a good team and that we would have to collectively play defense together," said Canby senior post Nicole Mickelson, who led all scorers with 16 points on 5 of 11 shooting from the field (including one 3-pointer) and a 5 of 13 day at the foul line, along with six rebounds, two blocks, one steal and one assist. "Last game was more of an individual defensive game, so today, we knew we had to band together and get this win."
It was Lakeridge that opened the game on a run Friday night, ripping off 10 straight points in the first quarter to lead 10-0 when junior Addie Reardon knocked down two foul shots with 3:31 to go in the period. O'Hollaren hit twice from the field and scored five points in that stretch, including a 3-pointer from the right corner assisted by Reardon.
The Cougars refused to panic, however. Instead, they stitched together an 11-2 run over the final 3:07 of the period, getting 3-pointers from both senior Arika Evans and Mickelson, and an inside hoop from senior Kaitlyn Mull assisted by Mead to make it 12-11 with 23 seconds to go in the frame.
After the drastic momentum swings of the first quarter, the ensuing 11 minutes saw the two teams take turns trading shots with each other. Lakeridge's Ericson went for five points in the second quarter (including one "three"), while the Cougars answered with four points each by Mead and Mickelson, and a 3-pointer by sophomore Kayley Borntrager to lead 23-21 at the half.
The battle continued at the start of the third quarter, with Pacer senior Abbi Fedrizzi taking a pass from sophomore Kiersten Weiler and burying a "three" from the top of the key to cut the Cougar lead to 25-24 with 5:02 to go in the period.
But Canby took over in the next 6:45, outscoring the Pacers 11-0 to extend its lead to 36-24 with 6:17 left in the game. Mickelson hit twice from the field and scored six points, and Evans added a three-point play in that stretch.
The Pacers clawed back within eight points twice in the remaining minutes — first on a putback by Weiler, and later, on a basket in the key from Reardon — but saw Canby put the game away at the foul line.
"We knew that we had this in the bag," Mead said. "We had the energy and we had the focus. We just knew it."
"The key on defense was we definitely had to communicate," Mickelson said. "They were running a lot of screens on the ball so we had make sure to call out the screen and get the switch that we needed to cover."
For their part, the Pacers vowed to learn from their loss and improve.
"I think we just need to never get down on ourselves," O'Hollaren said. "I think we should stay … mentally strong the whole game."
"We just talked about heart in practice because that's where everything starts," Ericson added. "Practice is where everything starts, not the games."
Evans added six points in the win for Canby, while Fedrizzi finished with seven points for Lakeridge.
Next up, Canby hosts Oregon City at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 21, while the Pacers face crosstown rival Lake Oswego at 5:45 p.m. Tuesday at Lake Oswego High School.
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