Hot-shooting Mustangs snap Colfax boys PVL win skein

Goebel, Morris keep Falcons from clinching; O'Keefe becomes all-time Colfax scoring leader
By: Mike Ray, Staff Writer
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COLFAX – Area  prep basketball pundits predicted before the start of this season that it was highly doubtful that any team would skate through this year’s Pioneer Valley League hoop schedule with an unscathed perfect record.

They were right.

On Friday night, Foothill’s visiting Mustangs strolled into Pucci Pavilion and put on a sizzling shooting exhibition on their way to handing previously undefeated Colfax a 65-60 setback.

For Colfax (19-6, 8-1), which has already cinched a piece of the PVL championship, the school’s first boys crown since 2013, the Falcons will have to defeat Placer at Earl Crabbe Gym in Auburn on Wednesday to avoid having to share the title with the Hillmen who trail Colfax in the standings by a game.

And in an interesting developing scenario, a Placer win over Colfax on Wednesday and wins by both Foothill and Lincoln, could mean a coin flip – after all league tie-breakers have been exhausted - may have to be used for tie-breaking purposes to determine the order of the PVL’s top three teams – and in Colfax’s case which division they play in – for the upcoming CIF playoffs.

The loss by Colfax, which snapped a seven-game Falcons win streak, was tough to swallow as the Mustangs used their prolific long range shooting to become the first PVL team to score over 60 points against the Falcons in league play this season.

“We could have played better but give Foothill credit,” said Colfax coach Terry O’Keefe. “They came in here hungry to get to the playoffs and shot the heck out of the ball. Stephen (Calton) had them ready to play.”

The guard tandem of William Goebel and Ty Morris proved to be the thorns in the side of the Falcons as they combined for 44 of Foothills points including seven of the eight treys that the Mustangs connected on in the contest.

Goebel, a junior transfer from Rio Linda, finished with a game high 25 points which included five triples. Three of Goebel’s treys looked to be lauched from the Pucci Pavilion lobby. Morris, meanwhile, followed with 19 before fouling out in the fourth quarter.

After leading 15-13 at the end of the first quarter, Foothill used its hot shooting to stretch its margin to 26-13 in the second quarter before Colfax closed with a late run that trimmed the lead to six at the break, 30-24.

In the third stanza, Goebel and Morris helped the Mustangs push the advantage to 47-36 before settling on a 51-40 lead at the end of the period.

The Falcons and Mustangs then spent most of the early fourth quarter trading baskets but the closest the Falcons could get was 63-58 with 57 seconds to play.

Foothill, which connected on 15 of 27 free throws on the night, hit on nine of 16 in the fourth quarter. On the evening, Colfax was 18 of 28 on foul shots but missed five in the final eight minutes including a critical pair after a Foothill technical foul.

Colfax was led by Garren O’Keefe who scored 23 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. With his effort, O’Keefe became Colfax High’s all-time leading boys career scoring leader with 1,501 points passing Scott Krizman (2006-08) who tallied 1,498 points.

Max Wolff also continued his fine play for the Falcons as he came off the bench and scored 13 points. Nate Sawi added eight and Mason Ahrens six.

Colfax is now 19-6 on the season, the most victories for a Colfax team since the 2013 squad went 24-7..