CANYON COUNTRY -- The Canyon football team is known for its 46-game winning streak in the 1980s. The Canyon cross country teams have won a number of national titles and CIF championships.
The boys' basketball team is on the verge of setting some school records and is showing no signs of slowing down.
The Canyon boys won their 12th game in a row, 68-34, over Golden Valley in a Foothill League game on Friday night at Canyon High School. The Cowboys are off to their best start in school history at 19-1. They are one win away from matching the longest winning streak in school history.
The 1978 Canyon boys' basketball team won 13 games in a row. That team went 22-4 and reached the semifinals of the CIF-Southern Section playoffs.
Canyon is the top-ranked team in the CIF-SS Division 2AA and, for the time being, the favorite to win the Division 2AA championship. It would be the first CIF basketball championship in Canyon’s history.
Known as a football school, Canyon is quickly becoming the basketball juggernaut of the Santa Clarita Valley.
Canyon coach Chad Phillips said his team is playing unselfishly and gelling like a family.
“It has to be,” Phillips said. “Everybody has a role. You gotta have role players to play around the star players.”
Canyon left little doubt in extending its winning streak against Golden Valley.
The Cowboys jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the first quarter. Coley Apsay hit a 3-pointer to push the lead to 10-3 and Elijah Veluzat hit a 3-pointer midway through the first quarter to give Canyon a 15-6 lead.
Clay Kasdorf hit another 3-pointer and scored the final five points of the first quarter to put Canyon up 22-11.
“They came out and shot the ball well,” Golden Valley coach Myron Watkins said. “It’s not just Coley and Clay this year.”
Canyon went on an 11-2 run to open the second quarter and led 33-13. The Cowboys were up by 22 points at halftime, 46-24.
The Cowboys extended their lead to 36 points, 65-29, at the end of the third quarter. Canyon’s starters took the fourth quarter off.
“We thrive off defense and we were hoping for that,” Phillips said. “The sky’s the limit. Every game presents a new challenge.”
With the Canyon starters on the bench, Golden Valley only managed five points in the fourth quarter.
Kasdorf led Canyon in scoring with 24 points. Apsay made three 3-pointers and finished with 17 points.
When asked if Canyon has any weaknesses, Watkins said, "They didn't have any against us tonight."
So what's it going to take to beat Canyon?
"Heart," Watkins said. "Guys just gotta step up."
Canyon can tie the longest winning streak in school history against Hart on Tuesday night. The Cowboys can set the longest winning streak in school history against Saugus on Friday night.