With the JV Boys basketball team winning their game and a nice homecoming ceremony, many people attending the Live Oak Lions varsity basketball game Friday night thought that the Lions would cap off the night with a win. However, the Willows Honkers had other plans, destroying Live Oak 61-41 on the road. It was a rare not-even-close loss for the Lions, who came into the night tied with Pierce atop the Sacramento Valley League standings.
The night for the varsity Lions was not good from the start. In fact, the Lions never scored a double digit quarter until the 4th quarter. In the 1st quarter alone, the Lions scored a mere 9 points. Tyler Raymond and Romario Acosta scored a combined seven of those points.
The 2nd quarter was even worse. The Lions top scorer in the quarter was Acosta with 3 points. The Lions scored only 7 points in the entire quarter.
At the half, the scoreboard looked very surprising to many Lions fans: they’re team was down 8 points and they had only scored 16 points in sixteen minutes of action. Acosta and Tyler Raymond were the main reasons the Lions weren’t down by an even bigger margin, considering they had combined for 12 of those 16 points. When asked about what happened in the first half, the Lions head coach said that it was because his team wasn’t playing hard and the team was taking way too many three point attempts. He couldn’t have been more right, considering that the Lions only made 1/9 three pointers in 16 minutes of action. The other stats didn’t make things easier for the Lions to comprehend: tallying just 15 rebounds, shooting less than 50% from two point range, making only half of their free throws, turning the ball over 10 times, and only collecting two assists.
Whatever changes were made for the Lions, they just didn’t help. In the third quarter, the Lions again couldn’t reach double digit scoring and came away with 9 points. Acosta didn’t slow down despite the hardships his team faced, scoring all but two of the third quarter points for the Lions.
By the beginning of the 4th quarter, the game was pretty much decided. Even so, the Lions continued to play hard and ended up with a good finishing quarter: 16 points. Acosta capped off his offensive performance with 10 more points. And while the game was in its final stages, the Lions went out with a bang, dunking the basketball in the final minutes. Since seeing a dunk at all in high school is a scarcity, that one dunk got the crowd roaring even though their team was losing a complete blowout.
Page 2 of 2 - When the game clock finally expired, the stats that had been tallied up told the story about the Lions night: less than 40% shooting from two pointer territory, less than 15% from 3 point land (they only made 2 three pointers all night), less than 50% from the line, 13 turnovers, and only 4 assists. The only decent stat of the night was the rebounds, which totaled to 28. As for the scoring, it was mostly Acosta and Raymond. Acosta led the way with a 23 point performance and Raymond added on 8 points.
The Lions will look to learn from this game and bounce back next week when they take on Hamilton and Durham on the road.