Lakeridge flies high to beat Lake Oswego 64-18 in Battle of the Lake
There was no love lost in this one.
The season's second Battle of the Lake contest between the Lakeridge and Lake Oswego girls basketball teams — held Friday, Feb. 14 (Valentine's Day) at Lake Oswego High School — was a hard-fought affair between two teams desperately in need of a Three Rivers League win.
In the end, the Pacers used their superior experience and firepower to leave the LO far behind, winning 64-18 on the Lakers' home court.
"It's always a fun, rival game, but it's always a tough one," said Lakeridge sophomore guard Reese Ericson, who led all scorers with 20 points (on 8 of 11 shooting from the field with three 3-pointers and a 1 of 1 day at the foul line), along with seven steals, seven assists and one rebound. "It's a battle of emotions and who can keep their composure the longest, but I think we played well together as a team."
"After a few tough losses these past weeks, we were really hungry to get this win," said Lakeridge junior wing Addie Reardon, who added 16 points (on 3 of 7 shooting from the field with two 3-pointers and an 8 of 9 day at the foul line), along with three steals, two rebounds and one assist. "I think it shows we can play that way with any team."
The victory snapped a five-game league losing streak and lifted the 24th-ranked Pacers' Three Rivers League record to 3-7 and its overall mark to 11-9. No. 44 Lake Oswego, meanwhile, lost for the 11th straight time and fell to 0-10 in the TRL and 3-17 overall.
"We were really focusing on (the press break) and trying to close out shooters, but that's a lot harder to implement in the game for us as a team," said Lake Oswego junior guard Emma Jeanson, who led her team with nine points (on 4 of 13 shooting from the field and a 1 of 2 day at the foul line), along with nine rebounds. "I think that was one of the main reasons we just got so lost at the start and then it just carried on through the rest of the game."
"We've been focusing a lot on how they play offense in practice, but it's really hard when we don't have people on our team with the same skillsets so it's harder to defend against in the game," added Lake Oswego sophomore Anna Wallin, who came off the bench late to score four points on 2 of 2 shooting from the field.
The Pacers, who also got 10 points from freshman guard/wing Keelie O'Hollaren and another eight from senior guard Abbi Fedrizzi, jumped on the Lakers right from Friday's opening tip. With Lakeridge using its fullcourt press to force eight first-quarter turnovers (and 27 for the game), the Pacers had a free hand on the other end of the court. After a slow offensive start, Lakeridge put together a 20-2 scoring edge over the final 6 minutes, 4 seconds of the period.
No one played a bigger part in that stretch than Ericson. The Pacer point guard broke loose for 12 points (on 5 of 6 shooting from the field with two "threes"), two assists, two rebounds and a steal.
She started with a baseline jumpshot from the left side, took a pass from sophomore Kiersten Weiler and buried a 3-pointer from the right wing, rebounded a miss by junior Payton Moffenbeier and scored on a drive, hit another "three" (this one off an assist by junior Keely Lipp), and finally, made a steal and hit a pull-up in the lane with 13 seconds left in the quarter to give the Pacers a 20-2 lead.
Jeanson hit her team's lone basket in the first quarter — she rebounded her own miss and made a putback with 3:34 to go in the frame — but the Lakers went just 1 of 8 shooting in the stanza.
The Pacers then used their long-range marksmanship to post a 14-5 scoring edge in the second quarter and extend their lead to a commanding 34-7 margin. Lakeridge, while forcing another six Lake Oswego turnovers, got 3-pointers from Ericson, Fedrizzi, O'Hollaren and Reardon, with Fedrizzi's "three" from the top of the key boosting the Pacers' lead to 34-5 with 32 seconds remaining in the half.
On their end of the court, the Lakers got an inside basket from sophomore Lily Carlson assisted by sophomore Kate Anders, a Jeanson free throw and a Jeanson reverse layin with seven seconds to go in the half that left the Lakeridge lead at 34-7.
The Pacers then dropped a 21-4 third-quarter bomb on the Lakers to extend their lead to 55-11, with Ericson adding another five points and Reardon 10 — including 8 of 9 free throws in the final 4:22 of the period.
The Lakers showed some life in the final period, getting outscored just 9-7 in the game's final eight minutes, with Wallin scoring four points in the final 1:50 while junior Emma Krauss added four for Lakeridge.
"We have a really great team bond and we want to play together and see each other win," Ericson said. "It's that drive to help our teammate succeed so our team wins."
"I think we were trying to treat them like any other team we were playing," Riordan said. "We didn't want to let up at all because we still need to work on things going into other games so we just tried to do well together."
For Lake Oswego, the Lakers — who played again without senior Megan Woolard due to illness and lost Anders again to knee trouble — acknowledged their challenges as well as their determination to keep competing.
"It's definitely hard for me and (Anders) both because we are the two main ballhandlers," Jeanson said. "When we're both on the floor, it's easier to break the press and to start the offense. When she's out, it puts an awful lot of pressure on (me)."
"You just have to go in and leave it all out there," Wallin said. "I have a limited amount of time out there so I just have to make it count."
For the game, O'Hollaren hit 4 of 9 shots from the field with two 3-pointers, along with five rebounds, two steals, one assist and one block. Fedrizzi also had three rebounds and three steals.
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