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The Aztecs conquest: Montgomery downs Carlsbad on The Holiday Classic Tip-Off Night

The battle between No. 1 and No. 2 in San Diego quickly became a clinic in game plan execution by the perceived underdog.

Montgomery (11-0) defeated top-ranked Carlsbad 63-55 in the prime time game of The Holiday Classic Tip-Off Night showcase but, to be frank, the final score is not indicative of how dominant the performance was.

It was surgical. Especially in the 4th quarter, when Montgomery had an answer for every defense the Lancers threw at them.

Carlsbad trailed by as many as 12 points in the second quarter before cutting Montgomery's lead to 2, 36-34, with 3:34 left in the third quarter.

But the Aztecs responded by outscoring Carlsbad 7-4 to close the quarter and opened the final quarter on a 5-0 push to push its lead to 48-38, playing with anywhere from an 8- to 12-point lead the rest of the game.

2025 G Xair Mendez, who has a reputation for being a dynamic, albeit streaky scorer, put together one of his best performances of his career, scoring a team-high 21 points and hitting some high-degree of difficulty shots when the team needed them the most.

But the Aztecs won with their balance and defense. JJ Sanchez contributed 15 points and won his individual matchup against Pepperdine commit Jael Martin, who was held in check for most of the game. 6-5 junior Devin Hamilton and 6-3 senior David Soto each scored 10 points, and Alek Sanchez, who didn't score in double figures, made key plays throughout for others.

6-4 senior guard Tony Duckett led Carlsbad with 24 points. 6-4 junior guard Jake Hall scored 15 points and 5-10 junior Jordan Garner added 8 points.

In the earlier games:

No. 4 Torrey Pines 64, No. 5 Mission Bay 46

The Falcons opened the game on an 11-0 run and led wire to wire in a dominant performance against a Buccaneers team that entered the game on a 6-game winning streak.

6-4 senior wing Matin Madadkar finished the game strong, scoring 9 of his game-high 19 points in the fourth quarter, during which the Falcons were able to expand the lead to as much as 24 after Mission Bay had cut it to 9 at the end of the third quarter.

6-3 senior guard Dylan Kail added 14 points, connecting on 4-5 from three-point range. Zach Jackson, Max Zylicz and Tevaris Green added 11, 9 and 8 points, respectively.

The Falcons were impressive defensively, holding 6-7 senior Charlie Hutchison to 9 points. 6-3 sophomore Caleb Newton led the Buccaneers with 13 points and 6-1 senior Gavin Girouard added 11.

No. 8 Santa Fe Christian 60, El Camino 44

In another wire-to-wire performance, the Eagles used a stifling defense to control the game from the outset.

6-2 senior guard Brycen Mackenzie led the way with 21 points, 7 rebounds and 8 assists for the Eagles, and 6-0 sophomore Dax Hall scored all 15 of his points in the second half.

6-0 junior Devin McGee led the Wildcats with 16.


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