Midway through the third quarter, Palo Alto's Jackson Chryst rifled a pass to Jamir Shepard through some traffic to complete a scoring play.
"I saw Jamir open and it felt natural," Chryst said.
Linnea Lindblom/Bob Dahlberg
Marvin Zou scored 20 points to lead the Vikings (8-7, 2-1), who have a 7 p.m. league game at Mountain View on Monday.
As the football players meld into the basketball fold and everybody gets adjusted to a new coach and new system, Chryst thinks the Vikings can still make a season of it.
"There's not a team on our schedule we can't beat," he said. "We just need to play smart. It took a couple of weeks but we're starting to find our groove."
The Vikings put themselves back into the thick of the SCVAL race and can take an even bigger step against the Spartans (12-2, 2-0), the only undefeated team left in league play. Paly is in a three-way tie for second with Cupertino and Homestead.
Anthony Yu and Matthew Marzano combined for another 17 points for Palo Alto.
Hannah Jump scored 22 points, Trinity Coleman had 11 rebounds and Pinewood bounced back from its first loss of the season to beat host Notre Dame San Jose, 84-30, in a West Bay Athletic League contest Friday.
Klara Astrom added 17 points for the Panthers (13-1, 3-0), who travel to Portola Valley to take on Priory at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Kaitlyn Leung and Courtni Thompson each added 11 points for Pinewood. Jump was 8 of 12 shooting, including a 5 of 8 effort on 3-pointers. Pinewood shot 40 percent (17 of 42) from long range.
Valentina Saric added nine rebounds, Jump and Annika Decker each contributed five and Thompson and Decker accounted for half of Pinewood's 20 assists.
Priory beat Notre Dame Belmont 43-32 and Menlo downed Sacred Heart Prep 58-41 in other league games.
Ila Lane scored 25 points and had 17 rebounds for Priory (8-5, 2-1).
Maeia Makoni scored 13 of her 15 points in the fourth quarter as Menlo beat Sacred Heart Prep, 58-41.
The Knights won their 12th straight, the longest streak since current Stanford associate coach Kate Paye helped Menlo win 18 straight en route to the state championship in 1991.
Menlo (14-1, 3-0) has a home game against Notre Dame Belmont at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday. The Tigers visit Sacred Heart Prep (10-5, 1-3) at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Erica Fischer scored 16 points to help Menlo-Atherton beat Carlmont, 44-41, in the Peninsula Athletic League South Division.
Linnea Lindblom and Malia Latu combined for another 14 points for the Bears (7-8, 2-1), who have won three of their past four.
M-A has a home league game Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. against San Mateo.
Fischer made a pair of free throws to give the Bears a 43-35 lead with just over two minutes to play. The Scots scored the next six points to draw within 43-41 with under a minute to play.
M-A gained possession of the ball with 13 seconds remaining to play and Oron Estes was sent to the foul line, from where she sank a free throw to clinch the win.
Nicolette Yeh scored the first five points of the second half to give M-A a 27-22 lead, which it never relinquished. Fischer and Malia Latu also scored to extend the run to nine points.
In the SCVAL El Camino Division, Gunn lost to Homestead, 52-45. The Titans (2-12, 0-3) welcome Milpitas for a league game at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Elsewhere in the PAL, Woodside fell to Sequoia, 48-34. The Wildcats (9-3, 0-3) greet Capuchino for a 5:30 p.m. game Tuesday.
Kyle Nilsson scored twice in the first half, one on an assist from Ethan Veghte and the other unassisted and Sacred Heart Prep topped visiting Menlo School 2-1 in a West Bay Athletic League contest Friday.
The Gators (8-0-1, 2-0) have scored at least two goals in all but one match as they prepare to travel to The King's Academy for a match Friday at 4 p.m.
In the second half, Menlo junior Trevor Perez won a header, which senior Ben Lasky converted into a goal with 31 minutes left.