BURBANK—It was a forgettable second half for the Providence High boys’ basketball team in its championship game with Chatsworth in the 25th annual Providence Paul Sutton Tip-Off Classic.
The Pioneers weren’t able to find answers for Chatsworth’s tenacious defense, particularly in the second half where Providence attempted only 22 field goals and watched as Chatsworth built a double-digit lead in the third quarter and sustained it in the fourth en route to a 73-59 victory at Providence High School.
“They’re an athletic and well-coached team that plays great defense,” said Pioneers Coach Chris Madigan, who received 17 points apiece from Kyle Lipton and Josias Parker. “They have tremendous skill on the perimeter and are tough inside. That’s a tough combination to beat.”
Providence (2-1) defeated Salesian one day prior in a game that came down to the final seconds. The Pioneers’ lack of size was exploited for a second consecutive game, however, as Chatsworth dominated the glass and tallied 20 second-chance points — 12 coming in the third quarter that created separation between the teams in favor of the Chancellors after a tightly contested first half.
Lipton wasted little time in getting the Pioneers on the scoreboard with two three-point field goals in the opening minute of the game. The forward set the tone in the quarter, as Providence made eight of 18 field goal attempts and was knotted with Chatsworth at 20 going into the second.
The offense subsided for both teams in the second quarter, as solid defense resulted in turnovers and subpar shooting. Chatsworth’s Jonny Salas hit three from behind the arc in the first half, including one late in the second to give the Chancellors a 34-30 lead. Jonathan Ly answered with two of his nine points to cut the lead by half, but the Pioneers would not lead again in the game.
“The glass and [Salas’] threes in the first half hurt us,” Madigan said. “We were able to hang in there, but I’d like to have chopped those two numbers in half.”
Salas scored all of his points in the first half, as the team shifted its offensive attack in the second. Michael Morrissey had a game-high 25 points — 12 coming in the third quarter that saw Chatsworth respond to adjustments made at halftime and impose their will inside and get easy baskets.
Chatsworth hit three of its seven three-pointers in the fourth quarter and left little doubt in what would ultimately be a comfortable tournament-clinching victory. The Chancellors had three players in double-digits, with Travis Patrick following up Morrissey’s 25 points with 15.
Brian Cabagnot added eight points and three steals for the Pioneers.
Providence is the first opponent to hold Chatsworth to less than 80 points. The team’s first-year head coach likes the progression he’s seeing after the season’s first tournament.
“In this three-game window, we’ve gotten better every game,” Madigan said. “It’s a valuable learning experience for us, because most of our players had never played with each other. I like that we’re working hard.
“We just need repetition. We need to practice and hopefully what we need to improve on will be better as the season goes on and we’ll be able to clean it up.”