TEMPLE CITY — Crescenta Valley High boys' basketball Coach Shawn Zargarian admired the start displayed by La Cañada on Tuesday night. It's precisely what he had hoped to get from his own team.
"We wanted to come out with energy by jumping on them and they did it to us," Zargarian said after La Cañada recorded a 65-53 victory against Crescenta Valley in a winner's-bracket game of the La Salle/Temple City Holiday Basketball Classic at Temple City High. "La Cañada's got a great shooting team and they had a lot of uncontested shots."
La Cañada (11-0) made its first six shots of the game to take a 14-4 lead and then held off a late comeback bid by Crescenta Valley (7-4). The Spartans will meet Montebello, which posted a 72-34 win against Temple City, in a semifinal game at 7:30 p.m. today at Temple City. The Falcons will meet Temple City in a consolation game at 6 at the same location.
La Cañada received 27 points from senior guard Michael McGlashan, including 22 in the first half. McGlashan and senior forward Matt Faber (13 points and 10 rebounds) combined to keep Crescenta Valley at bay.
"Those two came up big," said La Cañada Coach Tom Hofman, whose team held a 38-18 halftime lead. "I thought we played hard and played a good game.
"We got off to a great start. We were hot early and that definitely helped."
McGlashan scored on a layup to give the Spartans a 28-11 lead midway through the second quarter. McGlashan appeared to hurt an ankle early in the third quarter and missed about two minutes. He walked gingerly near the sideline for several moments before returning.
Zargarian said he had plenty to discuss with the Falcons at halftime.
"We were not playing hard and they just outworked us," said Zargarian, who got 20 points and seven rebounds from junior center Christian Misi and 17 points and seven rebounds from junior guard Dylan Kilgour. "We consistently lacked energy, and, against a good team like La Cañada, you can't come up with 20 unanswered points."
The Falcons cut into the Spartans' lead by opening the second half on a 9-0 run. A layup by junior forward Davis Dragovich trimmed La Cañada's lead to 38-27 with 6:31 left in the third quarter.
Senior guard Mason Holle finished with 16 points and six assists for the Spartans to help balance the offensive attack.
Former rivals, the Falcons and Spartans used to meet once a season in a nonleague game. The rivalry was renewed a bit with Tuesday's game.
"It's still a rivalry because there's the pride factor," Hofman said. "Now, we only see each other once every other year or so."
Said Zargarian: "It would be great to play them because of the fan atmosphere."