Thomas Leads No. 13 Knights Over Allan Hancock, 107-95, In 1st Round Playoff
Sophomore guard Martin Thomas hit 5-of-8 from 3-point territory and totaled 22 points to go with seven assists as he led the Knights to a 107-95 victory over No. 20 Allan Hancock (16-14) in the first round of the CCCAA Southern California Regional playoffs.
The No. 13 Knights (21-8) will now play at No. 4 Chaffey College (25-5) on Saturday, March 1 in the second round.
Four other Knights scored in double figures, including Ivan Kulkin who provided 18 points and 11 rebounds off the bench. Mike Scott scored 18 points, including 10-of-11 from the free-throw line, and brought down seven rebounds.
Christian Jones had 14 points and Chris Burton added 12 points.
The Knights caught fire from long range early on by making six three-pointers during a 21-3 run in the first half that turned a one-point lead into a 29-10 advantage, their largest of the game. Thomas, who was recently named PCAC South Co-MVP along with teammate Caleb Singleton, buried three of his four first half three-pointers during that stretch. Carl Flamer also nailed three from long distance.
The Knights made a total 8-of-14 from 3-point land in the first half and went into the break with a 46-31 lead.
Allan Hancock cut the Knights' lead to 11 early in the second half, but that would be as close as they would get. The Knights held the Bulldogs to 40.6 percent shooting for the game, while converting 48.7 percent of their own shots.
SDCC made 9-of-20 from three-point range, while Allan Hancock hit 6-of-21, with most of them coming in the final four minutes of the game.
The Knights took advantage of the Bulldogs' 18 turnovers by scoring 28 points off them.
The Knights have now advanced to the second round of the California Community College Athletic Association playoffs in each of the four seasons (2004-05, 2008-09, 2011-12, 2013-14) that they've qualified for the postseason under 10-year Head Coach Mitch Charlens. The furthest the Knights have gone is to the state quarterfinals in 2008-09.
SDCC will now turn its attention to the No. 4 Chaffey College Panthers who had a first round bye. The Knights edged them earlier this season, 66-65, in the first round of the Citrus College tournament. Thomas sank the game-winning free throw with one second left on the clock.
The second round game is scheduled for Saturday at 7:00 p.m. Box Score