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South boys wallop Jesuit, play for fourth place

PORTLAND -- South Medford rallied from a three-point halftime deficit Friday as the Panthers qualified for the fourth-place game in the Class 4A state boys basketball tournament.

Seniors Adam Decker, Travis DeManby, Bryn Ritchie and James Wightman combined for 75 points to propel South Medford to an 83-61 win over Jesuit at Memorial Coliseum.

The Panthers (24-3) slipped behind 38-33 early in the second-half then responded with an impressive 30-2 run.

When we use our defense to get us going in our transition game, we are a hell of a basketball team, said South Medford coach Dennis Murphy, who watched with pleasure as the Panthers thrust aside the memories of their 65-47 loss to top-ranked Churchill Thursday night. South plays 1997 champion West Linn at — p.m. today at the Rose Garden.

If we can win (today), we will be 25-3 and the fourth-best team in the state, Murphy said. That's a lot to hang your hat on, Murphy added. I think a lot of teams would like to trade places with us.

South tries to avenge a Holiday Basketball Classic semifinal loss to West Linn.

We have some revenge in mind for that one, said Murphy.

DeManby did more than score 20 points against Jesuit, holding the Crusaders' leading scorer Michael Dunleavy Jr. scoreless.

The 6-foot-5 junior guard is the son of Trail Blazers coach Mike Dunleavy. He took 13 shots and missed them all.

I tried to get up in his face and not let him have any open shots, said DeManby. I know how it feels to shoot with a guy in my face. He got one open shot, and fortunately he missed it.

The 30-2 run started after Jesuit's Mikey Gatlin drove to the basket and scored on layup with 7:22 left in the third quarter to give the Crusaders a 38-33 lead.

Just over eight minutes later, South was finishing its lethal 30-2 surge to take a 71-46 lead on a short jump phot by Graham Foster.

DeManby scored 18 of his 20 points in the blitz. He buried two 3-point shots and turned the second one into a four-point play when he was knocked down as he released the shot with 7:03 left in the game. That left the Panthers leading 61-46.

Wightman scored nine points during the run and Decker had five.

I think shutting out Dunleavy was bigger than what I did on offense, said DeManby. Because of that, this game is right up there with the best ones I've played.

Decker continued his impressive shooting, making 7 of 12 shots from the field, including 2 of 7 from 3-point range. We were down by three points at halftime, but there was no way we were going to end our season today, said Decker. We picked up our defense and Travis (DeManby) did a great job on Dunleavy.

Our seniors wanted to play their final game in the Rose Garden, said Decker. Now, we get to do that. Plus, West Linn is the team we wanted to play.

Brian Michaelson scored 29 points to lead Jesuit, including 20 in the first half as the Crusaders took a 36-33 lead at intermission.

Michaelson made four of five shots from 3-point range. Jesuit shot .436 (24 for 55) and South Medford heated up to .509 (27 for 54) by hitting 16 of its 23 shots in the second half.

The Panthers scored 50 points in the second half and made 23 of 28 free throws, including 12 for 14 in the fourth quarter.

We stepped up and showed how good we can be after a disappointing game the night before, said Murphy. To shut out a kid like Dunleavy is impressive.

Travis (DeManby) did most of the work there, but he got some help to keep the shutout going from Scott Okon. That's a nice thing for Scott.

JESUIT (61) -- Michaelson, 29, Gatlin 15, Buckmaster 5, Floberg 3, Wikander 2, Jubitz 2, Williams 2, Davis 2, Adams 1, Bennett 0, Dunleavy Jr. 0, Goffrier 0. Totals: 24-55 7-11 61.

SOUTH MEDFORD (83) -- Decker 21, DeManby 20, Wightman 18, Ritchie 16, Foster 5, Spangler 2, Melin 1, Okon 0, Schilz 0, Hildendorf 0. Totals: 27-53 23-28 83.

Jesuit16 20 10 15 -- 61

South Medford16 17 25 25 -- 83

3-point goals -- Jesuit 6-17 (Gatlin 1, Michaelson 4, Buckmaster 1), South Medford 6-16 (Wightman 2, DeManby 2, Decker 2). Fouled out -- Dunleavy Jr. Technical foul -- Jesuit coach Gene Potter. Rebounds -- Jesuit 27 (Michaelson 5), South Medford 33 (Ritchie 6).