Watchmen just miss out on state playoffs
SALEM -- Finishing games in the fourth quarter has been a challenge for the C.S. Lewis Academy boys basketball team this season.
That couldn't have been more evident at the Casco League District Tournament Friday and Saturday at Corban University, as the Watchmen's fourth quarter fortunes were the deciding factor in both of its games.
After watching a big first half lead over Livingstone Adventist Academy in the opening round dwindle down to just four points at the end of the third quarter, C.S. Lewis blitzed the Lions 20-6 over the final eight minutes to win 54-36 win Friday afternoon.
Unfortunately, it was the opposite situation Saturday with a bid to the state playoffs on the line, as the Watchmen were limited to two points in the final quarter in a 46-29 loss to Falls City.
"If you would have said we would give up 46 points in that game, I probably would have taken it," coach Brett Vernon said. "We just couldn't buy a basket in the fourth and it just killed us."
Junior Micah Grobey scored 24 points in the win over Livingstone, sparking the late rally with a deep three-pointer to open the final quarter. Sophomore Jacob More added two more triples in the quarter to finish with 14 points.
"That is hands down the best fourth quarter we've played all year in any close game," Vernon said.
With the Mountaineers very focused on him defensively, Grobey was limited to 13 points in Saturday's loss, with freshman point guard Dylan Stroup adding nine points.
The Watchmen (15-10, 8-6 Casco League) were both young, having no seniors, and with just six regulars, short on numbers, but Vernon said the team handled it well all season and should be poised for a break-out next winter.
"Winning 15 games with pretty much six kids that were almost guaranteed to suit down every game and no seniors on top of that, I thought we had a great year," Vernon said.
Sherwood 58, Newberg 43 -- Alex Jaczko scored 14 points and Ben O'Loughlin added 13, but the Tigers were undone by a rough stretch in the fourth quarter Feb. 13.
Newberg 59, Lakeridge 48 -- The Tigers led wire to wire, holding the Pacers to 10 points in the first half. Jaczko poured in 19 and Jack Chlumak had 14 for Newberg (11-12, 5-8), which is likely to advance to an OSAA 6A play-in game Saturday based on its No. 34 ranking.
Lakeridge 47, Newberg 38 -- Sicilly Hampton scored 13 points and Ashley Kosmicki put up nine, but the Tigers (4-19, 2-13) fell on the road Friday night.