06-23-2017  8:41 pm      •     
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NEWS BRIEFS

Cooling Centers to open in Multnomah County Saturday, Sunday

Temperatures expected to climb into the upper 90s this weekend ...

Multnomah County Leaders Release Statement on Safety at Summer Events

Officials advise public to check in, have a plan and be aware at public events ...

Portland Musician, Educator Thara Memory Dies

Grammy-winning Trumpeter, composer, teacher died Saturday at the age of 68 ...

St. Johns Center for Opportunity to Host Meet the Employer Event June 27

Employers represented will include Mary’s Harvest and Del Monte ...

New Self-Defense Organization Offers Training to Youth in Multnomah County

EMERJ-SafeNow offers July classes for children ages 8-10 and youth ages 15-19 ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Our Children Deserve High Quality Teachers

It’s critical that parents engage with educational leaders and demand equal access to high quality teachers ...

Civil Rights Groups Ask for Broad Access to Affordable Lending

Charlene Crowell writes that today’s public policy housing debate is also an opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past and...

Criminal Justice Disparities Present Barriers to Re-entry

Congressional Black Caucus Member Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.) writes about the fight to reduce disparities in our criminal justice...

Bill Maher Betrayed Black Intellectuals

Armstrong Williams talks about the use of the n-word and the recent Bill Maher controversy ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

Kadeem Strickland gets a hug

Kadeem Strickland (3) gets a hug after the Jefferson Democrats beat the Churchill Lancers, 69-64, to win the OSAA 5A boys basketball state championship in Eugene Saturday March 15, 2014. (AP Photo/The Oregonian, Randy L. Rasmussen)

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Silas Melson scored 24 points and Kadeem Strickland added 18 as Jefferson successfully defended its OSAA Class 5A boys basketball title, defeating Churchill 69-64 Saturday night.

The Democrats (26-1) built a 24-point lead in the first half, then watched it nearly slip away as Churchill pulled within 59-57 in the fourth quarter.

The Lancers (25-3) could never claim the lead, though, and Malik Morgan missed a potential game-tying three-pointer with 0.6 seconds left in the game. Morgan led Churchill with 21 points and 11 assists.

Jefferson won its fifth championship in seven years, and did so with more than half of its roster unavailable due to suspension. Earlier in the day, school administrators suspended six players for the final for unspecified detrimental conduct, joining previously suspended starting center Greyson Smallwood.

The six Democrats who did play came onto the court before the game with their arms linked together, something Melson said was his idea.

"That's just the leadership I want to bring to my team," said the Gonzaga-bound senior. "I want to bring all of my teammates together to play as one, and that's why we did that."

Jefferson made nine of its first 11 three-pointers in the first half and built a 45-21 lead in the second quarter.

"They've gotten hot before," said Jefferson coach Pat Strickland. "Kadeem was a catalyst, and it rubbed off on Silas and a couple other guys."

Churchill of Eugene, playing in front of a frenzied hometown crowd, wouldn't go away, outscoring the Democrats 25-7 in the third quarter to pull within 54-50 heading into the final period.

Each time the Lancers pulled within striking distance, Jefferson responded with a big play, mostly by Melson.

"I told Silas 'this is why you're the best player in the state, for these moments right here,'" said Pat Strickland.

Melson made nine of 15 field goal attempts, and added seven rebounds and four assists. Kadeem Strickland made four of Jefferson's 11 three-pointers.

"Jefferson played about as well as a team can play in the first half," said Churchill coach Kelly Bokn. "We just built such a hole. I was proud of our kids, they responded in the second half and played with all their heart."

The matchup was a repeat of last year's final, which Jefferson won 59-53. Jefferson also beat Churchill 67-55 earlier this season.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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