NCS basketball tournament: Plenty of upsets as Montgomery boys win, Newman loses
The No. 7 Montgomery boys basketball team registered a comeback for the ages on Friday night in a NCS Division 2 quarterfinal game.
Trailing 30-17 at halftime against No. 2 Las Lomas on the road, the Vikings rallied to win 50-45 and live to play another day.
“It was a great comeback. It shows the character of our guys,” Montgomery coach Zac Tiedemann said. “At halftime I thought we were really playing well. We kept our composure.”
Montgomery (24-5) outscored Las Lomas (Walnut Creek) 15-9 in the third quarter followed by a 17-6 dagger in the fourth quarter to give the Vikings the victory.
“In the second half our defense was solid,” Tiedemann said. “We held them to one field goal in the fourth quarter. We played at a slower, methodical pace, which Las Lomas isn't used to.”
Montgomery was led by Evan Poulsen with 20 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists. Ryan Merriken added 16 points for the Vikings.
Las Lomas (22-6) was led by Devon Payne.
Montgomery hosts No. 6 Tamalpais in a Wednesday night semifinal. Tamalpais defeated the Vikings by five points in a holiday tournament in December.
Tamalpais 60, Cardinal Newman 54
The favored No. 3 Cardinals went down at home unexpectedly to the No. 6 Red Tailed Hawks in the Division 2 quarterfinal matchup.
The sudden end - the first loss at home for the Cardinals this season - caps their season in a starkly different and unsettling manner than what the Cardinals were hoping for.
“It's disappointing to have our first loss at home, but give Tamalpais credit. They came in here and beat us in front of a packed house,” Cardinal Newman coach Tom Bonfigli said. “It's too bad we didn't play better. We were never really in control of the game.”
The Cardinals (23-6) were up 51-50 with three minutes to play but let the game slip away, getting outscored 10-3 in the homestretch.
“We made some bad shot selections late in the game. Tamalpais (20-10) made shots and we didn't,” Bonfigli said. “It was not one of our better games defensively.”
Cardinal Newman was led by Cody Baker with 21 points and Damian Wallace with 11 points. Cardinal Newman won the battle of the boards 36-26, with Jalen Dural hauling down 15 rebounds and Gavin Dove 10 for the Cardinals.
Analy 54, Miramonte 43
The host No. 3 Tigers (25-5) rolled to victory in a Division 3 quarterfinal against the No. 6 Matadors (16-12) of Orinda.
The key for Analy was a huge second quarter that saw Analy post a 26-3 advantage after trailing 17-5 after the first quarter.
“The second quarter, that was the game right there,” Analy coach Brett Page said.
“After the first quarter it wasn't looking good for us. In the second quarter we started some matchup switches and finding open shots and our guys started hitting shots.”
Meanwhile, Miramonte tried to match Analy's three-point shooting, to its detriment.
Analy held a 9-2 edge in converted 3-point shots in the game.
“In the first quarter Miramonte came out real aggressive and pounded us inside,” Page said. “In the second quarter they went away from what got them the lead in the first quarter.”
Analy took full advantage and never dropped below an 11-point leady in the second half.
Analy was paced by Dominic Tripodi with 27 points, 18 of which came in the second quarter. Teammate Aidan Toner-Rodgers had 20 points.
Miramonte was led by Charlie Hocking with 23 points.
Next up for Analy is a semifinal matchup against No. 2 Campolindo on Wednesday night.
In girls quarterfinal games:
Montgomery 71, Livermore 60
The host No. 2 Vikings (23-6) held off No. 10 Livermore (11-4) in a Division 3 game, affording Montgomery a semifinal game at home against No. 2 Acalanes of Lafayette.
The Vikings took advantage of the Cowboys' lack of muscle inside due to the loss of their 5-11 center, suspended after the previous game on technical fouls.
“Without Livermore's big girl, we had a huge advantage with Shayla Newman (22 points, 18 rebounds) and Ashleigh Barr (22 points, 14 rebounds),” Montgomery coach Darryl LaBlue said. “But Livermore was so scrappy, they just would not quit.”
The Vikings led 24-6 after the first quarter but the Cowboys whittled down the huge lead to a manageable 4-point deficit with four minutes to play. Montgomery beat back the charge from Livermore, thanks in large part to eight points in the fourth quarter by Barr.
Livermore was led by Emily Trask with 21 points.
Bishop O'Dowd 75, Sonoma Valley 23
Visiting No. 8 Sonoma Valley (23-7) ended its otherwise successful season on a low note, buried in the Division 3 quarterfinal by a scoring avalanche from No. 1 Bishop O'Dowd (25-3), the powerhouse Oakland program.