(Boyle Heights/East Los Angeles)-–From the game-day perspectives of the home team, the Roosevelt Rough Riders, and their opponent, the North Hollywood Huskies, this playoff game was certainly like no other they had ever experienced. It was an emotionally-charged, and significant game, greatly different than any other that the schools had played this season. It took place in a most unique aura, coupled with an environment of courage, sadness, respect, and competitiveness in heart-breaking memory for the loss of the Huskies’, #11 Xavier Patterson/SR/C-F, and team’s leading scorer. Due to his untimely death, just prior to its originally scheduled 1st round playoff game with the #7 seeded, Riders on Friday, 2/8, the game was expeditiously moved by the Commissioner’s Office to Monday, 2/11 to accommodate the grieving school Administration’s request.
Brief Game Summary & Photo Gallery Included:
Pre-Game: Just prior to the Public Address Announcer’s introduction of the starting line-ups, a profound, one full “Moment of Silence” was accorded to the memory of the dearly departed, Xavier Patterson. This was followed with a gesture of great sportsmanship, compassion, and respect as Roosevelt Head Coach, Mario Perez led his Asst. Coaches and Players to the Huskies bench to offer their deepest and sincerest condolences.
1st Qtr—It was controlled by the Riders as they took an early lead in the up-tempo and extremely frantic-paced effort. An equal number of missed field goals coupled with the same number of team turnovers could best describe the efforts by both squads. With much thanks to the scoring proficiency of starting guard, Salvador Ramirez, who dropped in 8 points, the Riders were leading at the end of the period, the score was Roosevelt 14, North Hollywood 8.
2nd Qtr—The Riders kept up the high-energy pace and scored in double figures, (11) while holding the Huskies to just another single point production of (7) in the period. Field goal percentages were minimal at best, but Roosevelt took more advantage of both the forced and unforced turnovers that allowed them to capitalize on the scoring opportunities that came their way. This gave the Riders an edge in the first half’s momentum factor. It was clearly evident to the Huskies that without the presence of their two top players, Patterson, along with suspended senior guard, and second leading scorer, Bryce Broussard, the going would be tough for the remainder of the contest.
HALFTIME SCORE: Roosevelt 25 North Hollywood 15
Photo Gallery: Bob Bernal Jr./EastSideMedia; and @NHHS_SAS/for Xavier Patterson Photo
3rd Qtr—At this point in the low-scoring game, the Huskies began to slowly gather themselves and find the range in scoring opportunities, coming from the perimeter and on hard-drives to the bucket. The Riders countered with a pair of huge, and timely 3 pointers, one by #21 Mario Rangel, the other by #23 Oscar Martinez. The Huskies, thanks to the scoring of #25 Aerick Fincher, managed to outscore the Riders by a (13-11) count in the quarter. The period ended with a (35-26) score, Roosevelt on top.
4th Qtr—Both teams came out to start the final stanza like two heavyweight boxers anxious to finish a close fight. Roosevelt started to show signs of letting the game slip away as the Huskies pulled out all of the stops and nearly caught up with a big change in momentum. Both teams’ fans could feel the tension and then the intensity surging, as the Riders began to turn the ball over on consecutive possessions and then miss a number of easy under the basket shots, put-backs, and missed perimeter shots. Meanwhile, the Huskies were capitalizing on these situations and rallied to narrow the gap to just 4 as the game approached the final 2 minutes. Of Signifcance…#10 Andrew Rodriguez’s clutch 3 point-shot from the right corner that found the range at just the right time. This gave the Riders a slight breather as the Huskies had to commit fouls and hope for missed free-throws to try and catch Roosevelt at the wire. However, the Huskies final field goal attempts were off the mark and the Riders made enough free throws to secure the victory. The winning difference in the game were the (5) 3-pointers made by Roosevelt in comparison to No. Hollywood’s (2).
FINAL SCORE: Roosevelt 48 North Hollywood 40
Note from The Editor: With the Roosevelt Administration’s concurrence, the North Hollywood team, coaches, parents, administrators, and student body members were afforded the extra and special time to render a moving “En Memoriam” homage and farewell to their beloved, Xavier Patterson. In addition, L.A. City Section Commissioner John Aguirre and his Sports Information Director, Dick Dornan were also in attendance. Present to lead everyone in this solemn moment of recollection and remembrance were his Mother, Father, and other Family relatives and friends. Our deepest and sincerest condolences go out to his entire Family. May Xavier Rest In Eternal Peace!!