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Unstoppable Stepp seals Tornado's doom

Boys prep basketball

EUGENE

-- North Medford placed five players in double figures, shot better than 41 percent from the field and scored 77 points in non-conference boys basketball against 10th-ranked South Eugene Saturday.

But North Medford couldn't devise a defense to stop 6-foot-4 senior point guard Blake Stepp of the Axemen, who blistered the nets for a career-high 52 points.

Stepp's incredible performance ignited undefeated South Eugene to a 92-77 victory.

Not only was Stepp a scoring machine, but he achieved a triple-double by adding 10 assists and 10 rebounds.

Stepp made 13 two-pointers, six treys and was 8-of-11 from the line. He had 29 points at halftime.

We've seen him shoot like that before, said South Eugene coach Dean Stepp, Blake Stepp's father. I knew he had a lot of points, but I was astounded to find out how many at the end of the game.

Dean Stepp said that is the most points scored by a South Eugene player in his 23 years as Axemen coach. George Zannivovich had the previous high of 40 in 1994.

Blake Stepp, who has signed a college scholarship to play at Gonzaga University next year, fell short of Mike Moran's school record of 59 points in 1955.

He had a size advantage against just about anyone who was guarding him, said Dean Stepp. They tried guarding him with three or four different guys. Other teams have a terrible time matching up with him.

Despite Blake Stepp's performance, North Medford stayed close. After the Axemen took a 10-5 lead halfway through the first quarter, North's Mike Olson sank a 3-pointer to ignite a scoring barrage as the Black Tornado raced to a 20-18 lead on five consecutive treys -- two by Olson and three by Chris Weyers.

The Black Tornado trailed 51-45 at halftime.

The final score was a little misleading, said Dean Stepp. North Medford was right in the game several times. Both teams were running. The lead changed hands like three times in the first half. It was a fun game to watch.

Olson led North with 15 points, while Wes Towne had a team-high nine rebounds.

NORTH MEDFORD (77)-- Olson 15, Weyers 12, Oliver 10, Foreman 4, Mellbye 2, Folsom 1, Towne 4, Jensen 0, O'Brien 8, Casebier 10, Schlichting 11. Totals: 30-72 7-12 77.

SOUTH EUGENE (92)-- Shockley 3, Long 0, Stepp 52, White 4, Larson-Xu 10, Yarabinec 0, Moshofsky 6, Parmenter 0, Bradetich 3, Hausmann 5, Robertson 9. Totals: 31-59 22-30 92.

North Medford

..........22 23 10 22 -- 77 South Eugene

..........31 20 24 17 -- 92

3-point goals -- North Medford 10-27 (Olson 4, Weyers 4, Oliver 2), South Eugene 8-20 (Stepp 6, Shockley 1, Bradetich 1).

JV score -- North Medford 77, South Eugene 59.

GRANTS PASS 53, MARSHFIELD 52-- At Coos Bay, Ian Elseth knocked down two free throws with 10 seconds remaining to help Grants Pass remain undefeated.

Grants Pass (4-0) built a 33-19 lead at the break, but got tentative and fatigued in the second half as Marshfield closed the gap. The Pirates trailed 51-50 when Elseth made the clutch free throws. Marshfield scored on a layup for the game's final points and the Cavemen did not have to inbound the ball as time expired.

Elseth, a 6-7 junior post, and junior guard Andy Dobner combined for 27 points.

Grants Pass won the rebounding battle 31-17, with junior Luke Lathen pulling down a team-high 10.

Grants PASS (53)-- York 2, Minor 10, Dobner 14, Berg 7, Schirle 3, Lathen 4, Elseth 13, Olsen 0, Cohen 0, McIntosh 0. Totals: 21 8-9 53.

MARSHFIELD (52)-- Vinyard 10, Wade 8, Sinclair 10, Dunlap 0, Jones 8, Morrow 0, McKelvey 2, Lewis 14, Gaudette 0. Totals: 18 15-21 52.

Grants Pass

............18 15 11 9 -- 53 Marshfield

..............11 8 18 15 -- 52

3-point goals -- Grants Pass — (Dobner 2, Elseth 1), Marshfield — (Lewis 1).

JV score -- Grants Pass 84, Marshfield 48.

CROOK COUNTY 65, CRATER 55--At Central Point, Jared Abell torched Crater for 35 points as Crook County ran its record to 5-0.

Abell, a 6-foot-6 senior now in his fourth season as a starter, made three dunk shots and three 3-point baskets on the way to his big night.

The game was tied 34-34 at the half before the Cowboys cranked up the defensive intensity in the third period to take a 50-44 advantage.

Junior post Andy Haas had 18 points and 12 rebounds to pace the Comets (2-2).

CROOK COUNTY (65)--Abell 35, Moon 4, Gillen 2, McCarthy 14, Lucas 4, Pinkston 6, Shoper 0, Gray 0, Eckman 0. Totals: 26-61 9-20 65.

CRATER (55)--Price 12, Wright 2, Jones 8, Darnell 8, Foster 7, Haas 18, Petersen 0. Totals: 20-52 15-20 55.

Crook County

.....16 18 16 15 -- 65 Crater

................14 20 10 11 -- 55

3-point goals -- Crook County 4 (Abell 3, McCarthy 1). Fouled out -- Price.

PLEASANT HILL 62, HIDDEN VALLEY 47--At Murphy, Pleasant Hill pulled an inside job on Hidden Valley as 6-foot-9 James Tharp scored 20 points and 6-5 Miles Sanogathe added 13.

Travis Riese tossed in 17 points for Hidden Valley, hitting five 3-point baskets in the process.

The visiting Billies turned the game around by clamping on a fullcourt press in the second period when they outscored the Mustangs 20-5 to take a 34-21 halftime lead.

The loss dropped Hidden Valley to 0-2 on the season.

PLEASANT HILL (62)--Tharp 20, Sanogathe 13, Smith 8, Neill 12, Na. Keith 4, Tasa 5, Wilson 0, Humphrey 0, Ni. Keith 0, Running 0, Davis 0. Totals: 29 5-5 62.

HIDDEN VALLEY (47)--Riese 17, Drummond 5, Beard 4, Caleb Thomas 10, Horning 7, Isley 4, Garay 0, Carr 0, Hyde 0, Kennedy 0, Kauffman 0. Totals: 18 5-7 47.

Pleasant Hill

.......14 20 16 12 -- 62 Hidden Valley

.......16 5 15 11 -- 47

3-point goals -- Pleasant Hill — (Tasa 1, Neill 2), Hidden Valley 6 (Drummond 1, Riese 5).

JV score -- Hidden Valley 47, Pleasant Hill 42.

SHELDON 58, ASHLAND 55--At Eugene, Derek Martell buried a line-drive 3-point basket from 50 feet at the buzzer as Sheldon stunned Ashland in the non-league game at Sheldon High.

Ashland's Carter Kirkpatrick hit a layup off a pass from Kris Pavilionis with three seconds remaining that tied the score at 55. But the host Irish called a quick timeout and then got the ball to Martell, who took a couple of dribbles and launched the game-winning shot from beyond the midcourt stripe.

Pavilionis led the Grizzlies (1-2) with 22 points and six assists. Senior post Brett Zundell added 12 points and six rebounds.

Blake Slonecker led four Sheldon players in double figures with 12 points.

ASHLAND (55)--Kirkpatrick 7, Streng 0, Beugli 0, Zundell 12, Pavilionis 22, Allred 6, Shields 1, Ehlers 3, Scholl 0, Cate 4. Totals: 20 12-15 55.

SHELDON (58)--Ross 11, King 2, Martell 10, Erickson 2, Baker 4, Slonecker 12, Magden 4, Copley 2, Haliski 11. Totals: 22 11-21 58.

Ashland

...........13 14 15 13 -- 55 Sheldon

..........17 11 15 15 -- 58

3-point goals -- Ashland — (Pavilionis 2, Kirkpatrick 1), Sheldon — (Ross 1, Slonecker 1, Martell 1).

JV score -- Ashland 55, Sheldon 38.

ROGUE RIVER 57, GLENDALE 47-- At Rogue River, Jason Luchterhand scored nine of his 15 points during a decisive 24-9 second-quarter to lead the Chieftains to their first win of the season.

Jeff Jentzsch chipped in 12 points and 14 rebounds and Derrick Schoner added 13 points for Rogue River (1-3).

Luchterhand also had six rebounds and two blocked shots, while Zach Badley came off the bench to gather nine rebounds and score seven points.

Justin Yow paced Glendale with 15 points.

GLENDALE (47)-- Yow 15, Owens 2, Dady 8, Foster 2, Donner 6, Dekruger 6, Causey 8. Totals: 17 11-19 47.

ROGUE RIVER (57)-- Luchterhand 15, Schoner 13, Jentzsch 12, Mortinson 2, Badley 7, Horton 6, De. Gee 2, Du. Gee 0. Totals: 23 9-17 57.

Glendale

.............11 9 14 13 -- 47 Rogue River

.........8 24 9 16 -- 57

3-point goals -- Glendale 2 (Yow 2), Rogue River 2 (Schoner 2).

JV score -- Rogue River 53, Glendale 45.

PERRYDALE 68, BUTTE FALLS 53-- At Amity, Butte Falls completed a difficult three-game road trip to open the season with its third straight loss.

Butte Falls previously lost to Days Creek and St. Paul.

The Loggers couldn't match up with Perrydale junior post Andrew Maze, who notched a game-high 26 points. Maze scored 20 points in the second half.

Travis Smeltz had a strong all-around game for Butte Falls with 20 points, seven steals and five assists. Smeltz was an efficient 8-of-15 from the field.

BUTTE FALLS (53)-- Harrington 16, Hampton 4, Rodgers 9, Stephenson 0, Sizemore 0, Smeltz 20, Rowden 4, Hayes 0, Hoel 0. Totals: 24 4-10 53.

PERRYDALE (68)-- Brown 10, Quenton 10, Eichler 8, Williams 8, Maze 26, Sterling 0, Floyd 0, Hutchinson 0, Stark 6, Gebauer 0, Atlinson 0. Totals: 28 11-14 68.

Butte Falls

...........8 8 16 21 -- 53 Perrydale

.........10 20 20 18 -- 68

3-point goals -- Butte Falls — (Smeltz), Perrydale — (Brown). Fouled out -- Harrington, Stephenson, Williams.