Independent of the outcome, the details make a difference to the Stevenson boys basketball team this season.
The Class 4A state runners-up from a year ago have big goals this season. So when they played to near perfection in building a 31-0 lead in a second round game of the Proviso West Holiday Tournament against New Trier, the Patriots weren't about to let their foot off the pedal.
"It's our motto this year -- everything matters," said Stevenson coach Pat Ambrose. "No matter the situation, every play, every moment matters to us in achieving our goals."
The Patriots tied a tournament record by shutting out the Trevians in the first quarter and cruised to a 76-30 victory over New Trier. Stevenson (10-0) moves into the quarterfinals of the 52nd edition of the tournament and will face Morton, a 65-50 winner over Uplift, at 3:45 p.m. Saturday.
"We weren't going to stop coaching or playing when we built the big lead like we did," Ambrose said. "New Trier didn't stop playing, and they are a good team."
Stevenson turned it into a lopsided affair in the opening quarter thanks to a stifling defense and a high-flying offense.
The Patriots turned New Trier (5-5) over six times in the first quarter as they built a 16-0 lead just five minutes in on a long 3 by junior Connor Cashaw (11 points). After a Trevians timeout, consecutive turnovers led to Patriot run-outs and the margin grew to 20-0 by the end of the first quarter.
It was just the third time in tournament history a team had been held scoreless in any quarter. The most recent team to accomplish the feat was Proviso West in 1992.
"We had some shots that we normally hit just not fall for us," said New Trier coach Scott Fricke. "Then some of those misses turned into run outs for them and things just started to spiral out of control. I've never seen anything quite like it."
The run grew to 31-0 before a free throw from New Trier senior Jordan Thomas stopped the run at 31-1 with 3:20 to go in the first half. The Trevians' first field goal came less than a minute later on a 3-pointer from Ricky Samuelson.
"I think coach (Ambrose) does a good job of keeping us disciplined even when we are up by that much," said junior guard Jalen Brunson, who led all scorers with 19 points. "As a team we have a focus for the entire game that no matter what the score is, we keep playing."
Stevenson opened the second half on a quick 7-0 run that sent the starters to the bench. Ryan Rosenbaum also hit double figures for the Patriots with 10 points. No New Trier player had more than 5 points.
Libertyville 63, Dunbar 50: The Wildcats advanced in the consolation bracket behind 20 points and 8 rebounds from Joe Borcia. Jack Lipp (13 points), Matt Reed (12 points), and Conor Peterson (11 points) also hit double figures for the Wildcats, who improved to 6-4. Libertyville will face Nazareth Academy at 10:30 a.m. Saturday.