Trojans find a way to score, defeat Elk Grove 54-33By: Matt Long, Sports Editor
For Coach Steve Scott, there wasn’t much not to like about his team’s 54-33 win over Elk Grove Friday.
His team played a strong defensive game, as is the norm, and also was able to find some offense, scoring more than 50 points for just the third time in nine games.
Oak Ridge never trailed, as it had a consistent offensive output throughout the game, scoring 15 points in the first quarter followed by 13 in each of the remaining three quarters. Other than the second quarter when Elk Grove scored 13 points, the Herd didn’t reach double digits in any other quarter.
“For us to score 54 points is huge,” Scott said. “That’s quite an accomplishment for us, of late. “What I thought was the best thing was the way we played together and got the ball to open guys and we were able to stick some shots.”
On top of playing a good offensive game, Oak Ridge made it tough for Elk Grove to score, challenging everything. The Herd made a few perimeter shots and got some baskets by taking it to the hoop, but those were few and far between. The 33 points scored by the Herd is a number the Trojans are used to putting up this season.
Oak Ridge led 15-4 after the first quarter, allowing only two baskets in keeping the Herd off the scoreboard for the final 4:31 of the quarter. Meanwhile, Grant Dean scored the last five points of the quarter, including a three-pointer at the buzzer, as the Trojans took an 11-point lead into the second quarter instead of a six-point lead.
Elk Grove got within five points of Oak Ridge midway through the second, but another strong finish to the quarter by the Trojans where they outscored Elk Grove 11-5, put the Trojans out in front by 11 once again, 28-17.
Bryan Bare and Dean both scored four points in the quarter, while Josh Simms added a three-point play. Bare and Simms played strong games all the way around for the Trojans.
“Those guys are workhorses for us,” Scott said. “They do it all. They’re on great stretch right now and they play hard and play well. We’re obviously a better team when they’re out on the floor.”
The Trojans broke the game open in the third quarter, outscoring the Herd 13-8 to take a 16-point lead, 41-25, into the fourth quarter. Oak Ridge scored the last nine points of the quarter on a transition layup by Simms, two nifty drives to the basket by Brogan Cooper and a three-pointer by Matt Battaglia.
Oak Ridge pulled away further in the fourth quarter as six players scored.
Bare and Dean led the team with 12 points, while Simms added nine.