SAN JOSE -- Archbishop Mitty trailed nearly the entire second half Friday night against eighth-seeded Soquel, finally taking the lead on Aaron Gordon's three-point play with a little more than a minute to play.

But it wasn't until Scott Akrop's 3-point attempt from the top of the key -- which would have won the game for Soquel -- hit the rim and bounced away in the final seconds that the Monarchs could exhale.

Mitty, a two-time defending state champion, edged Soquel 59-57 in a Central Coast Section Open Division quarterfinal at Piedmont Hills High.

The top-seeded Monarchs (23-5) advance to the semifinals Wednesday against Archbishop Riordan at Independence High.

"I dug really deep on that one," Gordon said after he led Mitty with 27 points. "I almost let my motor get off for a second, but I was like, 'No, this is the sport I love, this is the sport I play.' So I'm just never going to let my motor give out."

Mitty had to dig deep because Soquel (20-7) did what Soquel does.

It made a dozen 3-pointers and did not trail from the late stages of the first half until Gordon aggressively put back a missed shot with 1:14 to play and drew a foul.

Gordon made the free throw to give the Monarchs a 58-57 lead.

Soquel had a chance to retake the lead with about 10 seconds left but missed a 3-pointer. The Knights then fouled Brandon Abajelo, who made one of two free throws with 7.9 seconds left to give Mitty and a two-point lead and set the stage for the dramatic conclusion.


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"We're the No. 1 seed, so we're going to get everyone's best shot," Gordon said. "No knock on Soquel. They're a really good team. They shot the hell out of the ball."

It was clear from the outset that Soquel would be a challenge. The Knights led by three points at halftime and by five after three quarters. They led by as many as eight in the second half.

"Soquel is a hell of a team," Mitty coach Tim Kennedy said. "They gave us everything they had. We finally made plays at the end when we needed to."

Archbishop Riordan 58, Palo Alto 47: It was going to take a nearly perfect night for Palo Alto to extend its winning streak to 22 games and advance to the CCS Open Division semifinals.

But it was far from perfect for the Vikings. With 7:40 left in the second quarter, Palo Alto center Keller Chryst -- a highly ranked quarterback in football -- hobbled off the court and later out of the gym with an ankle injury.

The Vikings (23-2) kept the score relatively close into the third quarter, but they did not have enough to keep Riordan (18-9) from making it an all-WCAL semifinal.

"It kind of changed everything," Palo Alto coach Adam Sax said of Chryst's injury. "We had to move guys around in different spots on offense, the timing wasn't the same. We had to adjust."

Aubrey Dawkins led Palo Alto with 24 points, but it could have been an even better night. He missed a 3-pointer that went in and somehow came out in the first quarter. Moments later, his dunk attempt did the same thing -- somehow flying out of the cylinder.

"Bad start," Dawkins said. "But we've got to adjust and somehow adapt and put points in the basket. We played well. We played good defense, but obviously they played better defense."

Chryst was evaluated by a trainer from Riordan, and Sax later said he heard it could be a six-week injury, which means the 6-foot-4 junior will miss the team's consolation game Tuesday at Independence.

Bobby Arenas led Riordan with 19 points. Frankie Ferrari had 16.