BBK: Johnson shoots Royals into the 2nd round

Bryce Ridenour - San Marcos Basketball

San Marcos senior Bryce Ridenour blocked six shots in the Royals’ win on Wednesday.

San Marcos found new life in the CIF playoffs.

After struggling in Channel League play, the Royals were efficient on offense against South Pasadena’s zone and posted a 62-52 win in a 3AA Division first-round game on Wednesday at the Thunderhut.

San Marcos (16-9) moved the ball against the zone and got it to their hot shooter, Elijah Johnson. He finished with 27 points, making 3-of-5 from 3-point range and 8-of-9 from the free-throw line.

“Overall I thought we played pretty good basketball,” San Marcos coach Dave Odell said. “We moved the ball well and didn’t try to force too much.”

Bryce Ridenour had a solid game with 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting and six blocked shots. Scott Everman scored 12 points on 5-8 shooting.

Point guard Christian Widmer set the tone for the Royals.

“Christian Widmer was solid on both ends,” Odell said. “He really shut down South Pasadena’s best player, Joey Toyama. Toyama had no points in the first half and that allowed us to build the lead.

The Royals next play at second-seeded Atascadero in a second-round game on Friday night.

“Now we have Atascadero, who I think is the best team in our division of CIF,” Odell said. “They are big and good. In addition to Florida State-bound Robbie Berwick, they have several other collegiate level talents. We will have our hands full, especially in their gym. But, we play well against good competition and we’ve fared well outside of the county. This is one of those games where our strength of schedule should help us.”