Melson, Sanders combine for 55 points as top-rated Demos win easily
Jan. 25, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning / Oregonsports Journal
The stars were out to watch the Jefferson Democrats Friday night, and the top-ranked Class 5A boys basketball team didn't disappoint.
Led by 31 points by Silas Melson and 24 from Victor Sanders, the Demos ripped No. 8 Benson apart with a 48-20 run through the second and third quarters on the way to an 80-49 victory in a Portland Interscholastic League game at Benson.
The game brought out Oregon State and NBA great Gary Payton as well as University of Washington coach Lorenzo Romar for the inner-city rivalry that filled the Chiles Center twice a decade ago.
Benson owned the series the past two seasons while it challenged for a state title both years, but the Demos reclaimed the rivalry edge Friday.
"We've been down the last couple years, so we wanted to change that," Melson said. "I think we did."
Melson scored just five points in the first half, but outscored the Techmen 17-8 by himself in the third quarter. Melson's scoring run included a steal and breakaway dunk into the camera of a film crew that is cataloging the team's season for Nike's Jordan Brand.
Jefferson is one of only a handful of teams nationwide that are supported by the Jordan Brand. Having a pair of rookies in the NBA: Terrence Jones and Terrence Ross, got the program that kind of attention.
Lake Oswego holds the defending state champs to a season low in repeat victory
Jan. 8, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning / Oregonsports Journal
It happened again to the Jesuit Crusaders - an offensive blowout.
Blowout as in a tire getting thrashed on the highway causing a trip to the emergency lane.
Fortunately for the four-time defending state champions, the second loss to Lake Oswego in 11 days is plenty early in the season not to warrant any hearty concern.
But, Lake Oswego seems to have Jesuit's number this season.
Calvin Hermanson, who sat out the Lakers' game Friday with an injured ankle, returned and scored a game-high 14 points and Lake Oswego ended the game on an 8-1 run to beat Jesuit 46-38 in a non-league boys basketball game at Jesuit Tuesday night.
The match-up between the top two teams in Class 6A was a rematch of the Les Schwab Invitational from Dec. 29, which the Lakers won, as well as a rematch of the 2012 state championship, which the Crusaders won.
Lake Oswego held Jesuit to its previous season low of 43 in the LSI championship, a total that was 15 points lower than any of their previous 10 games in the season - all wins.
Trailing 32-23, the Crusaders rallied in the fourth quarter to within 38-37, but missed several inside shots and four of five three throws in the closing moments.
Khyan Rayner led Jesuit, which plays at No. 5 Central Catholic Friday, with 11 points.
Without Calvin Hermanson, Connor Griffin steps up in 59-45 victory
Jan. 4, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
LAKE OSWEGO - Playing without star senior Calvin Hermanson, Lake Oswego gave up the first nine points to Central Catholic Friday night before showing off it's more than just a one-player boys basketball team.
The top-ranked Lakers, still feeling the good vibes of having beaten rival Jesuit in the final of the Les Schwab Invitational six days earlier, suffered a blow Thursday when Hermanson, the Gatorade State Player of the Year as a junior, rolled his right ankle in practice Thursday. With Hermanson on the bench as a precaution, the Lakers rallied behind senior Connor Griffin and beat the fifth-ranked Rams 59-45 to improve to 13-0 on the season.
The win comes four days before a rematch with Jesuit at Jesuit. The Crusaders were represented by coach Gene Potter at Friday's game, which he recorded.
"This game definitely shows our team has depth," said Griffin, a 6-foot-5 post who scored a game-high 16 points. "Add it to our toughness and we feel pretty good about ourselves."
Senior point guard Christian McDonald added 12 points for the Lakers, who shot 21 free throws, making 16.
The Rams, who lost to LO 54-43 in the LSI, opened the game with considerably more energy than the Lakers on the way to their 9-0 lead, but Griffin scored six straight points for the Lakers as they cut the lead to 13-8 by the end of the quarter. In the second quarter, Lake Oswego ran its scoring run to 21-7 and they maintained control of the game thereafter.
Tuesday's game features the top teams in Class 6A, who met for the state title in March, which Jesuit won to run its string of consecutive state titles to four despite Hermanson averaging 28 points per game in the tournament. He has since signed to play at St. Mary's of the West Coast Conference.
Central Catholic dropped to 8-3, and plays host to Jesuit on Friday. The Rams got 12 points from Mitch Franz and 11 from Deonte Strickland.
Crusaders beat Gonzaga Prep from Washington, D.C., will face Lake Oswego
Dec. 28, 2012
Jesuit kept playing itself into the role of undisputed favorite to win a fifth straight Class 6A boys basketball state title with a 61-57 victory over Gonzaga Prep from Washington, D.C., in the semifinals of the Les Schwab Invitational Friday night at Liberty High School.
The win comes one night after the Crusaders beat Archbishop Mitty of San Jose, Calif., in overtime, and sets up a rematch of the state title game from last year when they beat Lake Oswego for their fourth-straight title.
Lake Oswego beat Neumann-Goretti High of Philadelphia in its semifinal.
HILLSBORO - Khyan Rayner scored a game-high 32 points, including six consecutive free throws in overtime, as Jesuit beat Archbishop Mitty 76-72 in the feature game of the second day at the Les Schwab Invitational Thursday at Liberty High School.
Jesuit overcame the Monarchs and 6-foot-8 Aaron Gordon, who had 43 points in a opening-round win against Southridge, in part through free-throw shooting as Gordon went just 3 of 14 from the line.
Gordon, double-team throughout the game, finished with just 17 points. The Crusaders were able to keep him from scoring in the fourth quarter, which ended with the teams tied at 63.
In the tournament's other quarterfinals, Gonzaga Prep of Washington, D.C., beat Century 78-64, Lake Oswego beat Central Catholic 54-43 and Neumann-Goretti of Philadelphia beat West Linn 96-74.
Archbishop Mitty's 6-8 forward lights up for 43 points in LSI opener
Dec. 26, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
If it weren't for a few missed dunks, Aaron Gordon might have set a single-game scoring record at the Les Schwab Invitational Wednesday night at Liberty High.
Instead, he settled for 43 points as the Archbishop Mitty High from San Jose, Calif., beat Southridge of Beaverton 80-70 in boys basketball action.
Gordon, who is 6-foot-8 and among the best high school players in the nation, made 20 of 25 shots from the field, with four of the misses coming on attempted dunks, to lead the Monarchs to the quarterfinals of the 16-team holiday tournament, where they will face four-time defending Class 6A state champion Jesuit.
The Crusaders beat Sheldon 77-39 in their opener to improve to 8-0 on the season.
The tournament record is 46 points, according to tournament organizers.
"We got a chance to watch them play," Monarchs' coach Tim Kennedy said. "We don't expect Aaron to get so many good looks at the basket like he did today."
Southridge got 21 points from A.J. Monterrosi in the loss, which dropped it to 4-4.
The Skyhawks represented themselves well throughout the game inspite of Gordon's huge size advantage. Scrappy play had the team within 56-54 late in the third quarter before a pair of turnovers turned into easy baskets for the Monarchs, who scored the first eight points of the third qaurter to take a 68-54 lead.
Gordon finished with 15 rebounds as well.
"We played okay today," said Gordon, who has publicly narrowed his college choices to Washington, Arizona and Kentucky, "but we gave up way too many points. We have to do a lot better job on defense."
On the day, the three out-of-state teams all won. Gonzaga Prep of Washington, D.C., beat Clackamas 90-51, and Neumann-Goretti of Philadelphia, beat Tigard. In other games, Century beat Columbia River of Vancouver, 58-47, Central Catholic beat Jefferson 84-67, West Linn beat Sprague 78-59 and Lake Oswego beat Sunset, 59-39.
In the quarterfinals, Jesuit and Archbishop Mitty meet at 5:30 p.m., following Century's battle with Gonzaga Prep at 4 p.m. Lake Oswego meets Central Catholic at 7 and West Linn faces Neumann-Goretti at 8:30 p.m.
Crusaders create first boys 4Peat with win over Lake Oswego
March 10, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
A year after establishing a win at one level, the Jesuit Crusaders established one for all levels with a 52-42 win over Lake Oswego in the Class 6A boys basketball final at the Rose Garden Saturday.
Last year, the Crusaders became the first school to win three-straight titles at the large-school classification, and matched three-peats by several other schools at lower classifications, including Jefferson's run at Class 5A (2008-10).
No school in Oregon had ever won four straight titles until Saturday.
With speedy guards Khyan Rayner and Xavier Coleman combining for 30 points, and suffocating defense holding LO's star junior Calvin Hermanson to a respectable 20 points, the Crusaders capped off another memorable season and won the school's sixth title since 1999 - all of them under coach Gene Potter.
CLASS 5A - Corvallis repeats
A night after title rematch in the semifinals, Corvallis defended its 2011 title with a 63-51 win over stubborn Milwaukie at Matthew Knight Arena.
Henry Parker and Jake Ehlers both scored 19 points to lead the Spartans, who finished at 24-4.
Milwaukie trailed just 34-32 midway through the third quarter, but couldn't sustain the momentum that had carried it through upsets the previous two days.
CLASS 4A - Central earns another title
Tanner Omlid scored on a lay-up with five seconds left to propel Central to a 49-47 win over defending champion Phoenix at Gill Coliseum.
Omlid, who led all scorers with 17 points, took a pass from Brendan Cutsforth on the way to the basket as the Panthers won for the second time in three years.
Crusaders' defense sparks 47-31 win, Lake Oswego beats rival West Linn
March 9, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
Top-ranked Jesuit played its way into the Class 6A boys basketball state final for the fourth straight year with a 47-31 win over North Medford Friday at the Rose Garden.
There, they'll face Lake Oswego, which will play in the final for the first time since the Kevin Love era ended in 2007.
Lake Oswego, which won the state football title in fall, beat Three Rivers League rival West Linn in its semifinal.
Saturday's final is a rematch of the 2005 final that featured Love as a sophomore. Jesuit won.
In its semifinal, Jesuit The Crusaders forced 22 turnovers and held the Black Tornado to just 11 points in the first half on the way to the win.
Khyan Rayner scored 22 points for Jesuit, which has won the title the past three seasons.
North Medford will play for third place Saturday for the second straight year in a rematch of a quarterfinal game from last season, when it beat the Lions.
Lake Oswego scored the first seven points of its game and led much of the game by double digits behind a stellar performance from junior forward Calvin Hermanson, who scored 32 points on 11-of-16 shooting from the field. He made all four of this three-point attempts.
CLASS 5A - Corvallis, Milwaukie return
Corvallis broke free of a tight game in the fourth quarter, outscoring Benson 32-18 for a 59-45 win in a finals rematch from last season.
The Spartans, who beat Benson in double overtime last year, made 32 of 42 free-throw attempts in the game, including all eight from forward Nolan Hansen.
Corvallis will play Milwaukie, which played into its first final in nearly 60 years with a 59-41 upset of Wilsonville, in the final at Matthew Knight Arena.
The Mustangs, who won the state title in 1954, got 23 points and nine rebounds from forward Keynan Middleton and made an incredible 60 percent of its shots - 24 of 39 - from the field. The hot shooting overcame a 17-3 edge in offensive rebounds for Wilsonville, which managed to shoot only 30 percent - 17 of 56 - from the floor.
CLASS 4A - Phoenix, Central meet again
Defending champion Phoenix and Central, which won the title two years ago, will face off in the championship game Saturday at Gill Coliseum.
Phoenix beat Sisters 74-55, while Central beat Seaside 40-26.
March 8, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
Jesuit's run to a fourth-straight Class 6A boys basketball state title got off to a rocky, yet confident start Thursday at the Rose Garden.
The Crusaders got 14 points from sixth-man Werner Nistler, 11 points and seven rebounds from Collin Spickerman and hit 12 straight free throws to close out a 54-45 win over David Douglas in the quarterfinals.
Jesuit, which improved to 23-2, led just 42-41 with 57 seconds remaining when Nistler hit the first of the free throws to start the run. The Crusaders were just 6 of 15 at the line prior to that shot and finished 18 of 27 (67 percent).
David Douglas got 22 points and 11 rebounds from forward Jeremiah Harris, but couldn't finish out its upset bid, less than a week after knocking preseason state title contender Westview from the playoffs.
Jesuit, which outscored the Scots 22-0 off the bench, will play North Medford in the semifinals Friday.
The Black Tornado, one of the four No. 1 seeds to reach the quarterfinals, beat rival South Medford 59-48.
MILWAUKIE PULLS HUGE UPSET
Unheralded Milwaukie upset top-ranked Mountain View 69-63 in the quarterfinals, powered by a huge game from center Keynan Middleton.
Middleton scored 34 points, including the final six in the closing 57 seconds after Mountain View had closed a 62-57 deficit to 63-61.
Milwaukie trailed 36-35 heading in to the fourth quarter.
Hermanson's first-quarter burst leads to 63-44 win
Feb. 7 2012 / By Jordan Royer, oregonsports.com
Calvin Hermanson scored 13 first-quarter points and the Lake Oswego Lakers took a 20-9 lead on the way to a 63-44 victory over visiting Oregon City in Class 6A boys basketball action Tuesday night.
Hermason set the tone early with an alley-oop slam and the Lakers used a strong post game to earn the victory, which sends them to West Linn Friday just a game behind the Lions in the Three Rivers League title chase.
Coach Mark Shoff was happy with the way his team started. “I thought we started off really well … then we got, what I tell them, cute, and we paid the price for it at times.”
Lake Oswego's 20 point first quarter was followed up by a slow quarter offensively but its defense allowed just eight points in the quarter to keep the Pioneers from drawing close.
In the third it appeared the Lakers had figured things out offensively once again as they piled on 21 points to widen the margin, allowing them to put it on cruise control for the remainder of the game.
Their shooting from the outside, however, is a concern moving forward for coach Shoff. They shot just 25 percent from behind the arc Tuesday.
The 21 points from Hermanson led all scorers while teammates Alex Matthews and Jason Luhnow added 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Joey Baldwin scored 16 points in the loss for the Pioneers.
The win improves Lake Oswego to 14-5 and they are now winners of four straight. Their last loss came on January 18 at the hands of West Linn, 63-60 in overtime.
Oregon City is 4-15, 1-5.
Oregon City......9 8 14 13
Lake Oswego..20 10 21 12
Oregon City- Hole 3-0-6; Baldwin 5-3-16; Polk 2-0-4; Jones 1-1-3; Mayo 6-1-14; Nguyen 0-1-1
Lake Oswego- Anderson 0-2-2; Luhnow 3-2-11; Allen 0-1-1; Hermanson 10-1-21; Quarterman 2-0-4; Casliek 0-3-3; Matthews 5-3-13; Lomax 4-0-8
Top-ranked Tech holds Demos to 15 points in second half
Feb. 7, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, oregonsports.com
Top-ranked Benson's drive to win its first state title at Class 5A nearly hit a season-ending snag with 4:05 left in a 70-52 win over Jefferson Tuesday.
Senior forward Bryce White, who's scoring and brash talk have led the Techmen to the top of the state rankings, collapsed to the ground clutching his right knee after battling for an offensive rebound with teammates.
The crowd at Benson went silent, as fans of the home team looked for a sign of White's condition. Coach Troy Berry walked over, talked to White for five seconds, then returned to the Benson bench, which reassured the crowd the injury was merely a cramp.
"I've never a cramp before," White said after quietly scoring 16 points. "I thought my calf broke. I know your calf can't break, but that's how much pain I was in."
"I was hoping his leg wasn't broke," Franklin said, "because he's a big factor on this team. We need him."
Benson remained in full control of the Portland Interscholastic League race with its 14th straight win, inmproving to 15-2 overall and 10-0 in league contests. Jefferson, ranked 14th, remained in second at 10-8, 7-3.
Norman Franklin scored a game-high 20 points to lead Benson.
Victor Sanders, a junior, led the Democrats with 17 points.
Benson scored relatively easily throughout the first half, with Franklin making several off-balance shots. But, Jefferson, a team with no seniors, scapped its way into a 37-all tie before the Techmen took the lead for good with six seconds left in the half.
Berry re-directed his team's focus at halftime.
"The first half we were just lazy," Franklin said. "Coach told us we needed to pick up our intensity and we got together and that's what we did."
Benson, aided by several foul calls that went its way, outscored Jefferson 21-8 in the third quarter and 10-7 in the fourth.
"This is a big win for us because it showed that we're the best team in the PIL," White said, "and also we're the best in the state."