For the first time all season, the Compton boys’ basketball team got to play someone from outside the Moore League. The Tarbabes got off to a slow start in their CIF-SS Division 2AA playoff opener against Temecula Valley, but the hosts eventually imposed their will in a comfortable 77-47 win at Centennial High.
Compton was led by its senior backcourt, getting a game-high 23 points from Isaiah Daniel and 21 points from point guard Patrick Johnson.
“They’re good. They’re the best backcourt I’ve had by far,” said Compton head coach Tony Thomas after the win. “We just ran them. I told them if we run them we don’t have to face their zone. We got our wind together in the second half and wore (Temecula Valley) down, so I’m glad.”
Temecula Valley led 16-13 after the first quarter, but Compton opened the second quarter on a 13-2 run to take an eight point lead. With Johnson sitting down with some foul trouble, Daniel stepped up his scoring with 10 points in the frame, knocking down a pair of threes and ending the first half with a breakaway dunk to put Compton on top 30-25 at recess.
“I’m really happy. We’ve just got to bring more intensity now that it’s the playoffs. If you lose now, you’re done for,” said Daniel after the win. “Whenever Pat’s not scoring or having a hard time, that’s when it’s time for me to step up and take control as the second guard. But he played great overall.”
Johnson certainly imposed his will in the third quarter, scoring 12 points and orchestrating an up-tempo Compton attack. The Tarbabes scored 29 points in the third quarter and ended it on an 11-0 run. Compton was relentless in growing the lead, and had a 26-3 spurt in the second half to put the game well out of reach.
Eight different players scored for Compton, with Malachi Scott and Placido Silva each chipping in nine points. Senior Jaylen Richardson scored six, while sophomore Nasir Riley hit two jumpers in the fourth quarter and freshman Avant Gilmore knocked down a three in the closing minutes.
Micaiah Hankins had a team-high 17 points for the Golden Bears. Seniors Charlie Bowman and Brenden Lapierre each chipped in nine.
Compton will continue its playoff run on Friday night, hosting Fountain Valley in the second round. The Barons beat Edison, 60-52, in their first-round game. Friday’s matchup will likely be hosted at Compton Centennial High School for a 7 p.m. tip.