Bryce Scott has always been proud of being an Oak Ridge Trojan.
When he was in fifth grade Scott was one of the ball boys for the squad, coached by his father Steve, that won the Sierra Valley Conference, Sac-Joaquin Section Division II, NorCal and the CIF State Division II titles.
“It was great being around them,” said Scott, now a senior point guard for his dad on this year’s varsity basketball team. “I really looked up to them. I even practiced with them. I always wanted to be in the gym 24/7.”
Two players on that championship team who stood out were guard Hiram Thompson, who Scott wanted to emulate, and Ryan Anderson.
“He taught me all his moves,” Scott said of Thompson. “He’s humble.”
Anderson, who played ball at Cal for two years and is now the starting forward for the Orlando Magic, was “amazing” — then and now — in Scott’s assessment.
“He’s worked harder than most people (playing basketball),” Scott said of Anderson. “He could take over a game in a second. He really just wants to win.”
Seven years later, Scott and Oak Ridge begin tonight what coaches refer to as the “second season,” when Troy, seeded 13, opens the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoffs at No. 4 West. The winner advances to Friday’s quarterfinal game against the Bethel-Granite Bay winner.
Scott and the Trojans look forward to the postseason, especially after dropping their Delta River League finale to Ponderosa on a shot at the buzzer — giving Oak Ridge a 4-6 league record, 14-12 overall.
“That was really hard game for us,” Scott said.
The Trojans will set their sights on a West squad that took second place in the Tri-City Athletic League.
“It’s time to refocus,” Scott said. “We’ve had a couple of team meetings (after Friday’s game). They (West) are very athletic. They can shoot.”
It goes both ways as the Wolfpack will have their hands full with Scott, who averages 21.7 points per game. Dangerous behind the arc with a team-leading 44 three-pointers, Scott is one of two Oak Ridge players averaging in double figures: senior guard Matt Howard scores at a 10.7 points per game clip.
Scott can also score at the free throw line where he’s made 144-of-192 shots. He’s also dished out 73 assists on the season while on the backboard, Scott pulls in 5.2 rebounds per game.
After he graduates from Oak Ridge, Scott continues his education and basketball dreams at Lafayette College in Pennsylvania on a scholarship.
While he plans to major in business, Scott currently has his mind on his academic studies at Oak Ridge and enjoying the final months of his senior year — all while preparing to play at the next level.
“Working on screens and rolls,” Scott said of his game. “I’m working on my game to get better for college. It’s a whole different type of basketball; better defenders (and) more athletic teams.”
Scott plans to coach basketball after his playing days are over and follow in his dad’s footsteps. He’s off to a good start, assisting an eighth-grade boys basketball team.
“I have a passion for the game,” Scott said. “I love to coach. I will definitely always have basketball around me.”
Would Scott like to coach his soon-to-be alma mater? The answer is clearly obvious.
“I’d love to come back here,” Scott said enthusiastically.