Chaminade’s dynamic senior duo of Michael Walsh and Jonathan Patterson continued to dominate the NSCHSAA tournament in Tuesday's championship game.
The Chaminade Flyers routed the Holy Trinity Titans 85-64 to capture the NSCHSAA boys basketball championship Tuesday night at Hofstra University.
From the opening tipoff, it was apparent Chaminade’s interior size and unselfish play between Patterson and Walsh would prove to be too much for the Titans to overcome.
“Our big guys, Michael and John, play so well with each other and they feed off of each other,” said Chaminade head coach Robert Paul. “They know where to be opposite of one another on the court.”
The big men continued their dominant run in the NSCHSAA tournament for the Flyers with Patterson scoring a game-high 27 points while his battery-mate Walsh scored 14 points. Patterson was named the player of the game.
“It’s a dream come true,” said Flyers forward Walsh. “Jon and I are buddies on and off the court so we like to find each other. John was hitting shots and I kept feeding him.”
After a first quarter that ended with Holy Trinity trailing 18-16, Chaminade would make sure the game wouldn’t get that close again. The Flyers outscored the Titans 28-15 in the second quarter and never looked back from then.
Senior guard Liam Murphy fueled that second quarter run, hitting back-to-back three-pointers to extend the Chaminade lead over Holy Trinity to double digits. Murphy finished with 16 points for the Flyers. Chaminade led the Titans 46-31 at the end of the first half.
Holy Trinity came out with a flurry in the third quarter, opening the quarter with an 11-4 run behind strong play from the Nassau and Suffolk player of the year, Damon Coleman. Coleman scored 22 points for Holy Trinity in the losing effort. Chaminade’s defensive effort was focused on trying to limit Coleman’s effectiveness on the court.
“Defensively, we tried to keep him in front of us,” Patterson said of the scheme to contain Coleman. “In the second half, we switched to a bit of a zone where we always have someone in the paint ready for him if he gets through the first layer of defense. It’s a credit to our guards. They did a great job. Coleman is a great player.”
Titans guard Isaiah Rowe-Ukey drained a pair of free-throws to shrink Chaminade’s lead to 53-42. That’s as close as Holy Trinity would get, however, as Chaminade went right back to their marquee big men. Following a Liam Murphy runner, Walsh found Patterson with a pretty one-handed pass that put Chaminade up, 57-43.
Chaminade coach Robert Paul praised his senior big men and trusted the offense in their hands.
“I have complete confidence in them of what they want to do,” Paul said. “They make a tremendous amount of suggestions to me and I listen to them. They’ve been together longer than I’ve been with them so I might as well listen to them.”
With the Chaminade faithful jumping in unison and cheering as Flyers’ starters Patterson, Walsh, Brian Ehrhardt and Thomas Ahern were lifted with a minute left in the game.
“It’s great to win with these five guys,” Patterson said. “Knowing them for four years of high school and going through it from the first tryout in freshman year and to have that culminate over four years is a great feeling to get the win in the big game.”