It was Ore time, part three, in Lake Forest on Saturday. But the ending wasn't quite as satisfying.
For the third time in the last four weeks, St. Viator's Ore Arogundade either won the game or sent it into overtime with a last-second shot. Saturday it was 3-pointer at the buzzer to tie the game at 74.
But unlike in the other two games, the Lions did not come out on top as Lake Forest outscored St. Viator 13-4 in the extra session to post an 87-78 victory.
"We are resilient," St. Viator coach Mike Howland said. "We really are. They don't ever quit and that is how we mount these comebacks. But we need to stop getting ourselves in those situations."
The Lions dug themselves a hole in the fourth quarter when Lake Forest, behind the play of 6-foot-8 Evan Boudreaux, who finished with 40 points and 20 rebounds, looked to pull away. The Scouts (18-4) appeared to be in complete command with a lead of 70-61 with 1:22 to play.
But this is a Viator team against which no lead is safe. The Lions turned the heat up to the point where it could melt the snow outside, forcing 4 turnovers down the stretch.
Arogundade and the Lions saved the biggest turnover with 5.6 seconds and the Lions trailing 74-71 after a basket by Sal Canella. After two timeouts, Boudreaux, with Arogundade all over him, mishandled the inbounds pass, giving the Lions life.
And Arogundade extended that life, taking a pass after the inbounds and then drilling a shot just outside the arc to send the game into OT.
But overtime was not kind for the Lions. After falling behind 77-76 in overtime, the Lions would go on to uncharacteristically miss 4 of 6 free throws as the Scouts pulled away.
"That was a big shot, but I was hoping it would give us some momentum into overtime," said Arogundade, who finished with 27 points and 10 rebounds. "We weren't able to do a thing in overtime. You can blame it on fatigue and the fact that we didn't execute. But the bottom line is we have to play better defense and not put ourselves in this situation."
The loss will most likely cost the Lions (17-5) a top 4 seed in the Lake Zurich sectional, which is likely the toughest in the state. The sectional, which begins next month features, Stevenson, unbeaten Fremd, Zion-Benton, Lake Forest and Warren.
"We are having a problem getting stops," Howland said. "We are at a little bit of a crossroads here. We are just not tough enough right now. And we are running out of time to figure things out."
The Lions looked like they had things figured out a few times during the game. St. Viator had leads in both of the first two quarters, only to see Lake Forest rally.
St. Viator opened up a 12-6 advantage late in the first quarter. The Scouts were able to come back behind Boudreaux to take a 15-14 advantage at the end of the period.
The Lions went on an 8-1 run to lead 22-17 with 5:45 left in the half. Boudreaux again brought the Scouts back, this time from the outside where he nailed a 3 as the teams battled to a 31-31 tie at the break.
St. Viator, which had five players in double figures, led 50-48 after three quarters. But Lake Forest scored the first 6 points of the fourth quarter on their way to 10-2 run and 58-52 lead with 4:32 to play.
"Somehow we seem to get down after we play well at the start," said Cannella, who finished with 10 points and 6 rebounds. "We always get that urge in the fourth quarter to play hard. We need to start off every quarter like it is our last."
The Lions, who converted 23-of-29 from the foul line, got 13 points from Mark Falotico and Pat McNamara and 11 points from Roosevelt Smart.
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