On a streak of three wins, the Pagosa Springs High School (PSHS) Pirate boys varsity basketball team finally have a winning season, with a 6-5 record overall, and remain unbeaten in the Intermountain League after a decisive victory over the Wolverines in Bayfield, Friday night.
“A good win on the road,” mused coach Jim Shaffer. “We played really well in the first half.”
Not just the first half — outscoring the Wolverines 45-23 in the first three quarters of play, the Pirates were in no danger of losing their perfect conference record. After closing down the first quarter with a 18-9 lead, the Pirates continued their onslaught, completely dominating the floor and finishing the half with a 32-15 lead.
“We were never really threatened,” Shaffer said.
Giving no quarter, the Pirates entered the final period of the game with a comfortable 22-point lead, outscoring Bayfield 13-8. With ample breathing room in the final period, the Pirates only allowed 13 Wolverine points, a pittance that didn’t come close to preventing Pagosa from traveling home with a commanding 53-36 win.
Despite shooting a mediocre 44 percent from the floor, Pagosa made an impressive defensive showing, with six blocked shots, 11 steals, and 44 rebounds. Holding Bayfield to less than 40 points, the Pirates clearly prevented Bayfield from initiating any kind of substantial offensive game.
Having blocked three Bayfield shots, senior pointman John Jewell was third in scoring for the Pirates with 8 points. Junior Taylor Shaffer led the Pirates with 12 points, closely followed by freshman Tyson Ross with 11 points for the game. Junior Jordan Caler finished out the Pirate’s top-scorers with 7 points.
Commenting on the Pirates’ slow-down in the second half, coach Shaffer pointed to Pagosa mistakes, saying, “We didn’t play as well in the second half, we had too many turnovers.”
Indeed, the Pirates logged 25 turnovers for the game.
“You have to give Bayfield credit,” Shaffer said. “They played really hard and the way they play, it can make it hard to adjust.”
The Pirates face a heavy schedule over the next week, going on the road to Farmington, N.M. for a game tonight, travelling to Monte Vista for a league rematch on Saturday night, then returning home to host the Mancos Bluejays next Tuesday at the PSHS gymnasium. All games start at 7 p.m.