John Connolly finished with a game-high 16 points. | Credit: Victor Bryant

The San Marcos High boys basketball team put an exclamation point on an undefeated run through it’s Channel League schedule with a 68-37 victory over Dos Pueblos on Thursday night.

11 Royals scored led by senior John Connolly, who poured in 16 points as San Marcos overwhelmed Dos Pueblos with defensive pressure that they turned into easy buckets in transition.

“Typically we like to hang our hat on defense,” said San Marcos head coach Jelani Hicks. “Our thing is we’re trying to get better every single day, whether that’s practice or a game so defensively we’ve got to keep making adjustments and adding to what we do.” 

Dos Pueblos hung tough early behind strong starts from Trevor Lamberson and Cole Collins, who finished with 12 and 10 points respectively. Connolly knocked down two three pointers in the opening period for San Marcos, but the Royals only led 11-8 going into the second quarter.

As the game progressed San Marcos found another gear offensively pushing the ball ahead in transition and increased its lead to 26-10 on a basket inside by Jaden Robinson.

A three-pointer by Lamberson and a nice reverse layup by Emilio Cervantes cut the Dos Pueblos lead to 28-15 at halftime, but San Marcos outscored the Chargers 26-12 in the third quarter led by Shakir Ahmed, who notched 12 points in the period by relentlessly attacking the rim.

“We’ve had so many different leading scorers or just leaders. It can be anybody’s night and this group is so unselfish that when someone opens up and gets hot we find them,” Hicks said. “I think that helps us because we have balanced scoring, but at the same time when guys need to step up and have big nights we have that ability as well.”

Thomas Kinzler was the third San Marcos player to reach double figures with 12 points. The Royals (10-4 overall, 10-0 Channel League) will find out their opponent in the opening round of the CIF-SS Division 2A playoffs Sunday when the brackets are revealed. 


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