SACRAMENTO -- Let the trash talking begin in the Thompson household.
Junior guard Stephen Thompson Jr. and his younger brother, freshman guard Ethan, haven't been able to challenge their father, Stephen Sr., who won two state titles at Crenshaw High in 1985 and 1986.
On Saturday at Sleep Train Arena, the Thompson brothers came through with 20 and 14 points, respectively, to help Torrance Bishop Montgomery defeat Hayward Moreau Catholic, 85-44, in the Division IV state final. It was the largest margin of victory in state final history.
"I get to say I'm one step closer to accomplishing what he accomplished," Stephen Jr. said.
Added Ethan: "I will be able to do a little bit of trash talking, but we have to come back and win one more."
That's entirely possible, considering that the Knights (28-6) will return every player but point guard Justin Bibbins, who scored 12 points, had nine rebounds and four assists and made many contributions as a court and team leader.
"I felt I needed to be a mentor to them and lead by example," Bibbins said. "I'm really proud of the young guys. Everybody better look out for them. They're going to be a team to beat."
Said Coach Doug Mitchell of Bibbins: "I think a lot of people doubted this team because we lost so much, but his leadership helped us go over the top. He's one of the greatest competitors I've ever been around in my life."
Bellflower St. John Bosco relied on the clutch play of Daniel Hamilton (22 points), Tyler Dorsey (21) and Vance Jackson (16) to win the Division II title with a 63-54 victory over Folsom.
St. John Bosco (23-11) opened a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter, only to make five turnovers in a 90-second stretch and see Folsom close to 56-54 with 1 minute 3 seconds left on a four-point play by Jordan Ford. But Hamilton made four consecutive free throws in the final 28 seconds and Dorsey added three.
"We just had to step up and make some clutch free throws to close out the show," Dorsey said.
Hamilton gave hints of the Braves' struggles this season trying to come together in a final team prayer under the tunnel, saying thanks in a prayer for "learning from our mistakes."