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PREP BOYS BASKETBALL

Zebras woes continue in loss to Colfax

Baskets becoming elusive
By: Kirby Desha and Jim Linsdau of The News Messenger
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PIONEER VALLEY LEAGUE

Boys Basketball Standings

Colfax (8-0, 19-6) win over Lincoln 68-53

Placer (6-2, 18-7) win over Foothill 73-57

Lincoln (4-4, 18-7) loss to Colfax 68-53

Foothill (4-4, 9-16) loss to Placer 73-57

Center (2-6, 9-15) win over Bear River 47-43

Bear River (0-8, 7-14) loss to Center 47-43

LINCOLN HOME GAMES

Feb. 9 (Fri.) Bear River 7 p.m.

*Feb. 14 (Wed.) Center 7 p.m.

*Final regular-season game

 

 

The Lincoln High boys losing tumble continued Wednesday, dropping a 68-53 decision to Pioneer Valley League-leading Colfax. It was the third straight loss for the Fighting Zebras.

Lincoln led 29-24 at halftime, but the Falcons’ gym caved in on the Zebras in the second half. Colfax turned the tables with a 22-10 run in the third quarter. Things did not get much better in the final frame as the Falcons cruised to their eighth straight PVL victory.

Placer 67, Lincoln 48

After being unable to find the basket against Foothill earlier in the week, the Zebras got rocked in Auburn Friday. Lincoln is now in a battle to earn one of the PVL’s three automatic bids into the playoffs.

“We’re just not very tough,” said Lincoln head coach Robert Ash, as to whether the Foothill loss could be chalked up to a learning experience. “I don’t think you have learning experiences in February.”

The Zebras final two games are at home against No. 6 Bear River and No. 5 Center.

Foothill, now in a tie with Lincoln in the standings, has a bigger hill to climb. The Mustangs lost to Placer Wednesday and head for Colfax Friday. However, their final game is in Bear River.

Foothill 57, Lincoln 46

Although the Mustangs could not be accused of shooting lights out, the Zebras seemed to be shooting with the gym lights turned off. Lincoln shot 25 percent from the floor and 56 percent from the free-throw line.

“(We) were like stagnant offensively and we didn’t get out in transition. If we don’t shoot it well we feel bad for ourselves and don’t find ways to manufacture points,” Ash said. “Our screens away from the ball weren’t very good. We’re not occupying our guy; it’s just ‘I’m going to shoot it and hope it goes in.’”

And the shots did not go in very often.

After coming off a thrilling double-overtime win at Center, the Zebras varsity boys team could not find the range and dropped a home game to a very athletic Foothill team. Neither team could get much going in the first half, with the score favoring the visitors 24-15 at the break.

Foothill used a combination of fast breaks and 3-point shots to open up a 20-point lead in the third period, 43-23 with four minutes left in the period. Lincoln missed opportunities to close the gap at the free-throw line, as Foothill got into foul trouble, but the Zebras shots were unusually mediocre from the charity stripe.

Although Lincoln had the edge in rebounds with 22 total, most came on the defensive end.

“(We) were not aggressive on the offensive glass. We get them when they come to us,” said Ash. “There is no ‘When things aren’t going our way, I’m going find a way to help our team score.’ It’s just, ‘I’m going to shoot it and if it doesn’t go in that’s not good for us.’”

A PVL title is out of reach for the Zebra Town boys, but a shot at making up some ground in the playoffs is well within their grasp. How Lincoln finishes could set the tone for entering the Foothill Valley League next year.

Against Antelope, Angelo Nicandro was high-point for the Zebras with 11; nine of them came in the second half. Connor Manley and Trevor Rodriguez had eight rebounds apiece.