Scott’s 30 points not enough for Trojans at Pleasant Grove

By: Nick Pecoraro/Telegraph Correspondent
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The playoff push is going to require a little more ‘umph’ from the Oak Ridge boys’ basketball team. The Trojans headed to Pleasant Grove on Wednesday hoping to rip off a tough road win from the Eagles and inch a win closer to reaching the postseason in an ultra-competitive Delta River League. What they experienced on Wednesday night was much of the same outcome as their previous meeting with the Eagles on January 11 (a 73-66 loss), this time with a 60-52 outing, resulting in the Trojans’ third DRL loss this season. “They were better than we were tonight, no question about it,” said Oak Ridge guard Bryce Scott. “We came out flat and didn’t play with enough intensity to beat them. They’re a tough team to handle, so you have to play you’re A-game all the time.” Scott finished with 30 points (9-of-19) with five 3-pointers, but it was not enough to match balanced scoring from the Eagles (Cody Demps, 19 points, Matthew Hayes, 15, Malik Thames, 13 and Colfax Nordquist, 11). Matt Howard scored 10 for Oak Ridge but no other Trojan had more than four. “Bryce had a great game tonight and carried us, but we have to have more contributions from other guys,” said Oak Ridge coach Steve Scott. “(Pleasant Grove) is a top-notch team. They can defend around the basket. They’re good shooters, well-coached, and fairly disciplined on offense so when they move the ball to the open shot, they make them.” At the 4:15 point in the fourth quarter, Scott drove to the rim and tipped in his own miss to bring the Trojans within three points. The Eagles continued to pour in buckets and scramble for loose balls throughout a physical second half. A five-point Eagle lead forced Oak Ridge to foul with less than a minute left and Pleasant Grove executed from the stripe down the stretch. Scott scored 20 of his 30 in the first half but Oak Ridge turned the ball over 10 times (seven in the first quarter alone). Scott hit a three and a pair of free throws to tie the game at 28 with 1:02 left in the half before Demps hit a tough leaner into Scott Sanchez and a corner 3-pointer that beat the buzzer to end the half with a five-point Eagle cushion. Oak Ridge (14-9, 3-3 DRL) plays Folsom at home on Friday before two grueling road matches at Sheldon on Wednesday and Jesuit on Friday. “We’ve got to crunch down. Our season comes down to this final stretch,” said Bryce Scott. “We’ll come out ready to go and see if we can sneak out some wins.”