Colony’s Sullivan Menard outscored the opposition by himself in the first half of the Alaska Airlines Classic championship game in a near-perfect performance.
His only hiccup was a missed dunk.
It didn’t matter, though.
He had already slammed home the point that he was the best player in the tournament and the Knights were the best team at the 2019 Alaska Airlines Classic.
Menard poured in 19 of his game-high 24 points in the first half as Colony crushed West Anchorage 63-34 in the title game at West High to become the first Alaska team to win the Classic since 2010.
Menard was named Classic MVP and joined teammates Patrick McMahon and Colton Spencer on the all-tournament team.
Colony (17-2) beat St. Rita of Chicago (IL) and United of Laredo (TX) in each of the previous two days to lift coach Tom Berg’s Knights into the championship game.
After a slow, defensive first quarter, Colony came alive in the second quarter behind Menard.
The 6-foot-3 senior hit consecutive 3-pointers to push Colony’s lead to 22-11. Then he made a steal at midcourt and raced alone toward the hoop, looking for a one-handed jam – but his dunk attempt bounced off the back of the rim.
Moments later, he swished a 3-pointer. Then another 3. Then two free throws. When the dust settled, Menard had outscored West 19-13 at halftime.
As good as Menard was, though, he wasn’t involved in the play of the night.
Thirty seconds into the third quarter, Colony point guard Jeremiah Hersrud threw a beautiful bounce pass to 6-foot-5 Patrick McMahon, who caught it and took one dribble before throwing down a monster two-handed jam in traffic.
That gave Colony a 32-13 lead and made the rest of the second half almost seem like a formality.
Spencer scored 15 points and McMahon added 12 points for the Knights, who won their third tournament this season.
West (7-4) never found its groove until the fourth quarter. It’s much-heralded transition game was stalled and the perimeter shots weren’t falling.
Jamari Lawrence scored 16 points as his team’s lone double-figure scorer. He joined teammate Diques Esaw on the all-tournament team.
West had been the last Alaska team to win the Classic in 2010. This was the third straight appearance in the title game for the Eagles.
Colony Knights 10 20 21 12 – 63
West Anchorage Eagles 4 9 2 19 – 34
Colony – McMahon 12, Dearborn 0, Menard 24, Spencer 15, McPhail 0, Hall 0, Escobedo 0, White 3, Hersrud 4, Baker 5.
West – Esaw 8, Lawrence 16, Jackson 2, Martinez 0, Jones 0, Jon 3, Fick 3, Grant 0, Wilson 0, Johnson 0, Snow 2, Muehlenkamp 0.