St. Joseph flushes St. Ignatius out of Nazareth Sectional
St. Joseph's Glynn Watson (30) jumps to stop a pass by St. Ignatius' Lester Larry (4) in an IHSA 3A sectional semi-final March 7, at Riverside-Brookfied High School in Riverside. | Rob Hart~Sun-Times Media
Updated: March 19, 2013 1:02PM
RIVERSIDE — For just a few seconds, the sight of a basket swaying back and forth following a monster two-handed dunk by St. Joseph 6-foot-8 center A.J. Patty was an ominous scene.
It was even more scary for St. Ignatius since that emphatic flush capped a 12-0 fourth quarter run that helped lift the Chargers to a 47-37 Class 3A Nazareth Sectional semifinal win over the Wolfpack (18-12) at Riverside-Brookfield.
“Loren (Horten) just threw me a good (alley-oop) pass and I caught it and dunked it,” Patty said. “We just wanted it tonight and we wanted to play tomorrow. Right now we are playing for each other.”
With the win, the Chargers (18-12) will face Orr in the sectional final at 7:30 p.m. Friday in what should be a much faster paced game than what they saw against the Wolfpack.
Patty finished with a game-high 16 points to go with eight rebounds and two blocks. Paul Turner and Jordan Ash had eight points each. Bill Langhenry and Aaron Allen contributed 10 points each for the Wolfpack.
“We adjusted to what they gave and we couldn’t continue playing at their tempo,” said St. Joseph coach Gene Pingatore, whose team beat the fellow Catholic North member 47-41 in February. “We have to play good defense and have good shot selection, as always, if we want to win tomorrow.”
The first half featured few possessions by either team as the Wolfpack played their normal slow tempo style. They trailed 14-12 at the break.
The pace picked up in the third and the Chargers methodically built leads of 24-18 and 26-20 before the Wolfpack rallied to tie the game 26-26 after a basket by Allen early in the fourth.
From there, Patty scored six points and Ash added four during the decisive fourth quarter run.
“They played well,” St. Ignatius coach Rich Kehoe said. “A lot of people thought this was a rebuilding year for us and that we’d be lucky to win five games. Well, we won 18 and tripled everybody’s expectations.”