Oak Ridge claims Shoot Out Tournament with win over St. Francis

By: Matt Long
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Sara James scored 25 points and Megan Griswold added a career-high 23 in lifting Oak Ridge to a 63-51 win over St. Francis on Saturday night. The victory made Oak Ridge winners of its own Shoot Out Tournament, following wins over Burbank and Pleasant Grove on Thursday and Friday, respectively. Oak Ridge jumped out to a 21-11 lead after the first quarter and led comfortably the rest of the way. The Lady Trojans hit the perimeter shot in the first half, as Griswold hit a pair of 3-pointers in the first quarter and another in the second. Dakota McLarnan also hit a long-range three in the first quarter and James hit two in the second quarter and Natalie Stone added one, as Oak Ridge worked up a 41-23 lead at the break. James scored 18 points and Griswold had15, as the two combined for 33 of the team’s 41 points in the first half. “It feels good,” Griswold said after the game. “I’m still a little surprised. They were doubling Sara and my teammates did a good job of finding the open man and a lot of the times that happened to be me and I was fortunate to hit my shots.” Oak Ridge coach Steve White was thrilled with Griswold’s performance. “Megan’s been one of our most consistent players all year,” White said. “She’s so tenacious on defense and rarely makes a mistake. She’s been working on her offensive game and got here early and was shooting before the game. I’m glad she was able to have a career-high in a championship game because she deserves it.” Oak Ridge didn’t play as well in the third quarter, but were still only outscored by two points. The team only scored nine points in the quarter, as they turned the ball over multiple times and missed the shots that were falling in the first half. “This is only a good win if we learn from our mistakes,” White said. “We got a little spastic in the third quarter and our shots weren’t falling. It’s just a matter of being smarter with the ball.” James was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player, while Griswold and Stone also made the all-tournament team.