Coming into the 16th Annual Les Schwab Invitational, two of the favorite teams were Riverside Academy (Louisiana) and Yates High School (Texas). That being said, the local Oregon teams weren’t buying the hype and with overwhelming home town support, both squads pull out the eventual upset.
In the first quarterfinal game of the day, Central Catholic stunned highly touted and nationally ranked Riverside Academy by the score of 82-65. More importantly, the game was never in doubt as Central Catholic jumped out to an impressive 27-8 first quarter lead. Riverside did manage to make the game more interesting in the second quarter, but still trailed 39-30 at halftime. The hero of the day for Central Catholic was 6’3 Senior SG Danny Brakebush as he literally took it to the more athletic Riverside Academy team. Brakebush finished with a game high 34 points. He went 11-22 from the floor (2-6 from the 3 point line) and 10-13 from the free throw line. While he knocked down a couple of threes, Brakebush was highly effective in slashing to the basket and finishing extremely well. In addition, he grabbed a team high 9 rebounds and simply put his team on his shoulders. 6’6 Senior PF Reid Callan also enjoyed a banner day as he finished with 19 points and grabbed 8 rebounds. He went 8-9 from the floor and 3-3 from the free throw line. For Riverside, one of the nation’s top unsigned prospect tallied 22 points and grabbing 17 rebounds. He went 6-15 from the floor (0-2 from the 3 point line) and went 10-16 from the free throw line. Gathers is simply a man upon boys with his physical strength and mobility and his stat line proved why he is so coveted by many of the nation’s top programs. 6’7 Senior SG Donald Thomas Jr. tallied 14 points going 4-13 from the floor (2-5 from the 3 point line) and went a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line.
The storyline was rather simple for the upset win. Central Catholic was the more aggressive team and played with a tremendous purpose and passion and forced 24 Riverside turnovers. On the other hand, Central Catholic was also very loose with the ball as they committed 18 turnovers of their own. Both teams shot an unbelievable amount of free throws as Central Catholic went 20-27 from the free throw line compared to 19-26 for Riverside. While Central Catholic shot over 50% from the floor, Riverside was only able to connect on 39% for the game. On paper, Central Catholic looked overmatched from an athletic POV, but the aggressive play of Central proved too much for the team from Louisiana.
The second quarterfinal game of the day featured two teams with similar style and Jesuit was able to pull out a two point win over Lake Oswego by the score of 52-50. Both teams were well coached and were fundamentally sound and the game had its share of ebbs and flow throughout. Leading the way for Jesuit was 5’10 senior PG Xavier Coleman. Coleman finished with 22 points going 8-13 from the floor (2-5 from the 3 point line) but only managed 4-9 from the free throw line. Coleman’s backcourt mate 5’10 senior guard Khyan Rayner chipped in 18 points going 6-11 from the floor (1-6 from the 3 point line) and a perfect 5-5 from the free throw line. 6’6 Junior PF Calvin Hermanson led the way for Lake Oswego with 20 points going 8-18 from the floor (1-6 from the 3 point line) and 3-4 from the free throw line. Hermanson also grabbed a team high 12 rebounds. 5’11 Senior PG Jason Luhnow also enjoyed a solid game as he went 4-11 from the field (4-10 from the 3 point line) and 1-2 from the free throw line. Like the first game of the quarterfinals, the telling storyline was the 21 turnovers committed by Lake Oswego. Jesuit will advance to the semi-finals and will face Central Catholic.
In the third game of the day, it was the Oak Hill Warriors facing off against a fired up Lincoln team. The pro-Oregon crowd got behind Lincoln and they too were looking to pull off another upset over nationally ranked Oak Hill. Oak Hill went into the locker room at halftime with only a 33-27 lead, but Coach Steve Smith made some major adjustments and the Warriors outscored Lincoln 25-11 in the 3rd quarter. Oak Hill went on to capture its 22nd victory of the season with an impressive 74-46 victory. Without question, it was the Jordan Adams and Tyler Lewis show for the majority of the game. Jordan Adams finished with a game high 26 points and led the team in rebounding with 12 rebounds. Adams went 11-17 from the field (2-4 from the 3 point line) and 2-4 from the free throw line. Senior PG Tyler Lewis enjoyed another outstanding performance as he finished with 22 points and dished out 6 assists without having a single turnover. He went 10-14 from the floor (did not attempt any 3 pointers) and went 2-2 from the free throw line. Lewis also collected 3 rebounds and had 2 steals for the game. Oak Hill’s leading scorer D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera just couldn’t buy a basket and simply just had a “bad day at the office.” The self-confidence Smith-Rivera struggled offensively and only went 1-12 from the floor (0-6 from the 3 point line) for a season low 2 points. Smith-Rivera did manage 3 rebounds and dished out 3 assists. Oak Hill only committed 8 turnovers for the game and shot 55% from the floor while only connecting on 4-15 from the 3 point line. In addition, the Warriors only went to the free throw line 8 times, but connected on 6 of them. Oak Hill will advance to the semi-finals Thursday night.
In another stunner, it was Landen Lucas (Kansas) and his Westview HS team in an upset of nationally known Yates. Westview won 68-59 despite committing 26 turnovers for the game. Landen Lucas led his team with 20 points and 11 rebounds. He went 7-8 from the floor with the majority of them coming off dunks and went 6-9 from the free throw line. He also blocked 7 shots, but the biggest asset was his ability to be an outlet from the constant trapping defense by Yates. Lucas has excellent court vision for his size/position and is a solid passer. Other players that contributed to the scoring for Westview were Keon Burns with 15 and Bonhan Stafford with 10 points. For Yates, Clyde Santee was the leading scorer with 21 points. He went 8-23 from the floor (2-11 from the 3 point line) and 3-4 from the free throw line. No other player scored in double figures for Yates.
Both teams shot the ball rather poorly for the night as Westview went 24-62 for the game for 39% while Yates went 21-67 from the floor for 31%. Needless to say, the 3 point shooting for both teams were dismal as well. Yates went 4-25 for 16% while Westview went 6-23 for 26%. On the plus side, both teams went to the free throw line often as Yates knocked in 13-18 for 72% and Westview knocked in 14-19 for 74%. Westview will advance to the semi-finals and face Oak Hill Academy.
Thursday night semi-finals
Catholic Central vs. Jesuit
Oak Hill Academy vs. Westview