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Panthers fall from first with OT loss

EUGENE — After pulling together for a fine fourth-quarter rally to force overtime, the South Medford boys basketball team fell victim to a hot-handed South Eugene squad at the free-throw line in overtime on Friday.

The Panthers held the Axemen to just one made basket in overtime, but South Eugene made up for it by sinking 9 of 10 shots from the charity stripe and claimed a 61-57 win at South Eugene High School.

The loss broke a first-place tie in the Southwest Conference standings between the Panthers

(16-7, 10-3 SWC) and South Eugene (17-7, 11-2). The Axemen can secure the title with a victory over Willamette on Tuesday.

The Panthers boasted a 26-23 lead at halftime but the third quarter belonged to South Eugene’s Mason Green-Richards, who tallied 11 of his game-high 18 points in the frame.

Hunter Bradford led the charge for the Panthers in the fourth quarter with nine of his 13 points, helping South Medford knot the score at 50-all by the end of regulation.

Cameron English paced South Medford with 16 points and 11 rebounds, while Brayden Massey pitched in 14 points. Bradford collected six boards as well for the Panthers.

SOUTH MEDFORD (57) — Carroll 7, Massey 14, Carter 7, Bradford 13, English 16, Contreras 0, Franklin 0, Benford 0, Washington 0. Totals: 23-48 7-13 57.

SOUTH EUGENE (61) — Mason Green-Richards 18, Bowers 0, Lininger 13, Bassett 8, Holland 5, Gorman 6, O’Neil 11. Totals: 18-43 2-23 61.

South Medford;14;12;9;15;7;—;57

South Eugene;16;7;19;8;11;—;61

3-point goals — South Medford 4 (Massey 2, Carroll 1, Carter 1), South Eugene 5 (Green-Richards 2, Gorman 2, O’Neil 1).

JV result — South Medford won.

GRANTS PASS 50, THURSTON 34: At Springfield, Grants Pass improved to 10-13 overall, 5-8 in the Southwest Conference with the road victory.

CRATER 59, SPRINGFIELD 41: At Central Point, Christian Reyes played well attacking the basket and distributing the ball as Crater finished the regular season with an upset of Midwestern League-leading Springfield.

The Comets (16-7, 8-4 MWL) will next host a Class 5A state playoff game on March 4. The loss proved costly for Springfield (13-8, 8-3), which fell one game behind Churchill for first place.

Crater’s defense forced numerous turnovers which led to fastbreak scoring opportunities.

Reyes had 15 points, while Gunnar Asher Asher added 17 points and eight rebounds and Race Reiter contributed 12 points and five rebounds.

SPRINGFIELD (41) — Ah Sam 12, Black 0, Wilson 3, Cook 17, Thomas 3, Sorber 4, Harrington 2, Black 0, Bourassa 0, Haas 0, Gonzalez 0, Scorse 0. Totals: 16 2-3 41.

CRATER (59) — Reyes 15, Martin 3, Mallams 9, Asher 17, Reiter 12, Orozco 3, White 0, Howell 0, Kloke 0, Hadley 0. Totals: 25 2-2 59.

Springfield;11;6;14;10;—;41

Crater;18;12;20;9;—;59

3-point goals — Springfield 7 (Cook 5, Ah Sam 1, Thomas 1), Crater 7 (Mallams 3, Reyes 1, Martin 1, Asher 1, Orozco 1).

JV result — Springfield won.

ASHLAND 72, NORTH EUGENE 57: At Ashland, Collin Malcolm scored 16 of his season-high 32 points in the first quarter for Ashland during Midwestern League action.

Malik Pippa added 11 points as the Grizzlies (10-11, 4-7 MWL) snapped a five-game losing streak and clinched a Class 5A play-in game.

NORTH EUGENE (57) — Pruett 21, Snyder 16, Proudfit 10, Lannom 8, Tucker 2, Bohrer 0, Ahlstrom 0. Totals: 20 9-9 57.

ASHLAND (72) — Malcolm 32, Pippa 11, Shibley-Styer 7, Feinberg 6, Graham 5, Meads 4, Jones 3, Kennedy 2, Fuller 2, Edson 0, Hasskamp 0, Hansen 0, Ellis 0. Totals: 26 8-14 72.

North Eugene;6;14;16;21;—;57

Ashland;23;6;17;26;—;72

3-point goals — North Eugene 8 (Pruett 5, Lannom 2, Proudfit 1), Ashland 6 (Malcolm 3, Jones 1, Shibley-Styer 1, Pippa 1). Fouled out — Snyder.

JV result — Ashland won.

CHURCHILL 77, EAGLE POINT 68: At Eagle Point, senior wing Ethan DeVore went for a game-high 30 points for Eagle Point but the Eagles could not recover from a big halftime deficit in the MWL home loss.

Churchill (14-9, 9-2 MWL) moved one game in front of Springfield for first place in the MWL.

The Eagles (7-14, 1-10) trailed 46-31 at halftime.

Wyatt Hunter and Mario Quintero each added 15 points for Eagle Point.

CHURCHILL (77) — Brant 2, Perez 2, Forrest 15, Nelson 18, Tagen 0, Hubbe 3, Stubbs 9, Rixby 13, Wright 3, Gegun 4, Dean 8. Totals 24 24-38 77.

EAGLE POINT (68) — Hunter 15, Moreau 0, Shop 0, Shelton 3, Castro 2, Quintero 15, DeVore 30, Bell 2, Bennett 0. Totals: 22 19-22 68.

Churchill;19;27;14;17;—;77

Eagle Point;12;19;19;18;—;68

3-point goals — Churchill 5 (Forrest 1, Hubbe 1, Rixby 1, Wright 1, Gegun 1), Eagle Point 7 (Hunter 3, DeVore 2, Quintero 1).