Outlaws boys basketball end week with win over La Pine

 

Last updated 1/9/2024 at 10am



The Outlaws boys basketball squad opened league play with a 50-60 loss at home to Pleasant Hill (PH) on Wednesday, January 3, but wrapped up their week three days later with a 65-55 road win at La Pine.

Sisters opened Mountain Valley Conference (MVC) at home against the OSAA No. 2-ranked Pleasant Hill Billies, who are favored to win the MVC league championship this season. The Billies returned MVC Player of the Year junior Gavin Inglish, and the Outlaws knew they’d be in for a difficult battle.

The Outlaws got off to a very slow start, and found themselves down 1-10 at the 4:40 mark of the first period. Kale Gardner then hit a three-pointer for Sister’s first field goal for a 4-10 game. With less than a minute left in the quarter, Brody Fischer hit a long ball to close the gap to 8-17. PH hit one more bucket to close out the quarter with a score of 8-19.

Sister’s defense did a tremendous job in the second quarter and held the Billies scoreless for the first six minutes, while putting up 10 points of their own to cut into the Billies lead. Points off an offensive rebound and put back from Diego Silva, a three pointer from the corner from Austin Dean, followed by a deep long ball from Gardner. Landon Scott capped the scoring spree when he grabbed a defensive rebound and took it coast to coast for a contested layup. The Billies quick-strike offense scored nine points to close out the quarter, including a three at the buzzer. At the half Sisters trailed 20-28.

The Outlaws defense once again did a great job, and held the Billies score less for the first 4-1/2 minutes of the third quarter, while they went on a 9-0 run and took a one-point lead. The scoring started with three long balls in a row; a three from Fischer from the corner, a three-pointer from the wing from Scott, and then a three from Gardner from the top of the key.

From there teams traded points back-and-forth. The Billies went up by four toward the end of the third, but then Scott hit his second three pointer with just 25 seconds left in the period to close the Outlaw’s deficit to one point at 37-38. Sisters went five-for-five from behind the arc in the period.

The Billies started the final quarter with a 5-0 run and extended their lead to six points. However, Fischer hit a three from the corner to bring the game back to within three. Unfortunately, three points would be as close as the Outlaws would get. The Billies offense caught fire and they went on a 1-13 run to put the game out of reach. Sisters did score five points in the final minutes to cut the lead to a 10-point loss.

The Outlaws shot 11-for-22 from behind the arc, and finished with more three-point shots than two-point field goals.

Scott scored 17 points for the Outlaws and recorded five rebounds, and Gardner finished with 14 points, four assists and four steals. Fischer tallied 11 points and five rebounds and Dean and Silva each pitched in with three points. Silva also had five rebounds in the contest, and Sager added four.

Coach Chad Rush said, “This was a game that could have gotten out of hand early when the Billies started the game making transition baskets and connecting on three three-pointers to take a 17-5 lead. But, the boys showed a lot of grit and determination by not giving up and stepping up on defense in that second quarter. To be able to do something similar in the third again and take a lead after being down by such a large deficit goes to show the growth this team has made this season. I am proud of their continued effort and grit during the game.”

On Saturday, the Outlaws defeated La Pine for their first league win of the season.

The Outlaws scored the first three points of the game, but then the Hawks went on a 0-9 run to go up 3-9 with four minutes left in the quarter. Sisters’ defense tightened up and held La Pine scoreless for the next three minutes and went on a 9-0 run of their own to take a 12-9 lead to close out the period.

Scores remained close for most of the second quarter, with the Outlaws never getting more than a four point lead. Fischer and Dean both hit long balls in the quarter, and Scott closed out the scoring going three-for-four from the charity stripe. At the half, the Outlaws held a 27-24 advantage.

The Hawks hit back-to-back threes in the third and the Outlaws found themselves down by one, 31-32 with six minutes left in the quarter. Sisters defense clamped down and only allowed the Hawks four more points, while the Outlaws were able to put 17 points on the scoreboard. Gardner got the Outlaws lead back on a driving layup, and also hit a three-pointer when Silva got a steal and hit Gardner for the shot.

Sisters saw their largest lead at 48-34 when Scott got an offensive rebound put-back with under a minute left in the period. The Outlaws went six-for-seven from the free-throw line which accounted for six straight points.

La Pine went to a full court press in the final quarter, and went on a run and cut the Outlaws lead to just four points. That was as far as the Hawks would get, as Sager made two baskets to extend the Outlaws’ lead back to six. With 48 seconds left on the clock, the Hawks were forced to foul, and Sisters went eight-for-eight from the line, kept the Hawks at bay, and secured the 10-point victory.

Scott finished the night with 16 points and eight rebounds, and Gardner followed with 14 points and four assists.

“It was great to get our first league win tonight,” said Rush. “We knew this would be a tough, physical battle and that proved to be very true. I was proud of how the boys kept their composure throughout the game and did not allow the physicality to get them out of their games.”

The Outlaws are scheduled to play at home against Siuslaw on January 12.

 

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