Palo Alto coach Peter Diepenbrock was surprised when he was told that Max Dorward scored 27 points Wednesday in Paly’s 71-56 win over San Ramon Valley in the first round of the Joe Schram Classic at St. Francis.
“I didn’t realize he scored that many,’’ Diepenbrock said.
His reaction was telling. Most of Dorward’s points came in the flow of the game, in no small part due to the passing of point guard Miles Tention, who had 11 assists, nine in the first half. Dorward scored 12 points in the first quarter on six field goals; Tention assisted on all six.
“They’ve been a nice combo all year,’’ Diepenbrock said. “Max likes to move without the ball and Miles always has his head up, sees the floor so well.’’
Palo Alto (7-1) will play Campolindo in the semifinals Thursday at 6:15 p.m.
“They look pretty tough,’’ Diepenbrock said. “They have some big guys and they have some shooters. It should be a good game, a good test.’’
The Vikings led throughout the first half. San Ramon Valley caught up late in the third quarter and took a 38-36 lead on a driving layup by Eric Ficken.
Paly immediately responded, going on a 15-1 run to take a 51-39 lead one minute into the fourth quarter. Dorward’s three-point play, off a pass from Tention, started the run and put Paly back on top to stay.
Dorward scored again and then Tention, who finished with 13 points, contributed a three-point play of his own off a steal.
Dorward, who also had a team-high six rebounds, scored the final four points of the quarter on a pair of free throws and a basket. Then Will Schlemmer knocked down a 3-pointer to start the fourth quarter and conclude the run.
Jack Simison scored 11 points for Paly and Spencer Rojahn had 10.
At the Orange Holiday Classic in Fullerton, Menlo rallied but fell to Beckman-Irvine, 68-66, Wednesday.
Thomas Brown led a trio of juniors in double figures, scoring with a season-high 20 points, including a pair of three-pointers, on 8-of-13 shooting. Riley Woodson contributed 17 and Joe Foley had 13 for the Knights.
Menlo (2-4) plays Bellflower at 12:10 pm in a final-round game Thursday.
Menlo held a two-point advantage at halftime. The Knights extended its lead to 45-39 late in the third quarter, but the Patriots launched a comeback to lead by as many as six in the fourth. Menlo made its shots down the stretch as well, but couldn't top Beckman late.
Brown pitched in with five rebounds, Foley added eight assists, five rebounds and two blocks while Woodson grabbed six boards.
Tevin Panchal scored 17 points and Eric DeBrine added 11 in Sacred Heart Prep's 56-51 loss to Eastlake (WA) at the Surf 'N Slam Classic in San Diego on Wednesday.
Kyle Stalder scored 10 points for the Gators (1-6), who meet Bella Vista on Thursday.