Basketball, volleyball lead way

This is the final in a four-part series looking back on the sports accomplishments of the four local high schools over the past school year. This installment is Providence High:

Basketball took the center stage for the Pioneers during the 2010-11 campaign.

While a Providence boys' player was shattering school records and putting up monster numbers, the girls' hoop squad was rolling to a share of its second straight Liberty League championship.

Without a doubt, the most exciting basketball player in the area last season was Pioneers' junior Patrick Gonzalez, who rewrote the record books at the school. Although Gonzalez put up impressive numbers, the fact that the Pioneers (13-12) placed fourth in the Liberty League is probably the reason he wasn't awarded the league's player of the year honor.

The junior, who did earn first-team all-league honors, was a perfect fit in a Pioneers' offense that run an up-tempo game, took a lot of shots — especially from three-point range — and played limited defense.

Nevertheless, Gonzalez's efforts were nothing short of eye-popping. He broke school records in everything from points in a game (52), to free throws made (134), to most three-pointers in a game (11) to most three-pointers in a season (137).

According to maxpreps.com, Gonzalez ended the season with the highest scoring average and the highest three-point average (six a game) among players in California. The junior averaged 37.8 points and 11.5 rebounds a game. In addition, along with scoring 869 points, Gonzalez tallied 30 or more points in 19 games and 40 or more in 10 games.

On the school's career scoring list, Gonzalez has 1,468 points and trails Barry Dabbaghian (1,555) by just 87 points. Gonzalez should shatter that record next season.

Also earning all-league honors for the Pioneers was senior guard Tyler Kidd, who averaged 18 points a game.

With a new boys' coach in Earnest Baskerville, who likes to play a more controlled, defensive game, Gonzalez's numbers are expected to go down next season.

On the girls' basketball side, senior Rita Khatchadourian paced the Pioneers to a successful season.

Along with scoring 12.3 points a game, Khatchadourian also averaged four rebounds, 2.9 steals and 1.4 assists. In addition, she averaged double figures in scoring in 20 of the Pioneers' 27 games.

For her efforts, Khatchadourian was named to the All-CIF Southern Section Division V-AA second team. In addition, she was named co-Liberty League Player of the Year with Shooshan Zargaryan of Holy Martyrs.

The Pioneers and Armens shared the league crown.

Under Coach Andrew Bencze, Providence (20-7) fell in the first round of the playoffs to St. Bonaventure, 66-44.

The Providence team that enjoyed the greatest success in the playoffs was the boys' volleyball squad, which was coached by Josh Eggleston. The Pioneers finished second in the Liberty League and moved on to the CIF Division V quarterfinals, losing to Pasadena Poly in four games.

In the wake of that success, the Pioneers' Kris Galvez earned an All-CIF nod in Division V.

Galvez was a force on the outside for the Pioneers (16-7). He worked well with sophomore outside hitter Phil Harvey to give Providence a formidable 1-2 punch.

Galvez, who earned first-team all-league honors, tallied 165 kills. Harvey, a first-team all-league honoree, tallied 208 kills (13 kills a match) and a .384 kills percentage.

Jackson Saldana also made all-league in volleyball.

In the fall, the girls' volleyball squad made the playoffs, as the Pioneers (8-12) placed third in the Liberty League. Providence had two all-league selections in sophomore setter Janel Adraneda and senior outside hitter Cali Polanco.

Another group that did well in the Liberty League was the softball team, which placed second. The Pioneers had three all-league selections in Bronwyn Stewart, Gian Mari Llaguno and Natalie Ficocelli.

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