Colby Allen’s day usually involves a combination of a game and practice because he’s playing two sports—baseball and lacrosse—in the same season.
That’s always a juggling act, but Allen has handled it nicely. The Live Oak High senior is a second baseman on the baseball team and his impact in lacrosse has been monumental, as he entered the week leading the team in goals and assists.
A quick and athletic attackman, Allen utilizes his speed and ability to dodge defenders to get to the opposing goal and unleash multiple quality shots in every match. Allen also played wide receiver on the football team last fall and his ability to avoid the big hits in lacrosse and football has been paramount to his on-field production.
“I’m 5-7, 140-ish, so it’s really important that I’rn fast and can dodge away from contact [against bigger players],” he said.
Live Oak boys lacrosse coach Gavin Herr also pointed out that Allen’s determination is a huge factor in his success.
“Colby is an all-out effort player at all times,” Herr said. “He doesn’t stop and he is lightning fast. I love watching him play. The beauty of Colby is he’s not just looking to score, but looking to assist his teammates. He’s a selfless player. Last year he was that same quick kid, lightning in a bottle. But his stick skills have improved so much and his lacrosse IQ has really increased so much that he’s really gotten a good grasp of the game. I’m very happy for him.”
A host of other top standouts including Collin Fisher, Luke Richey, Nolan Ledwith and Ben Ledwith have helped lead the Acorns to their best season in program history. Even after a tough 12-11 non-league loss to Stevenson on April 24, Live Oak locked up its first Central Coast Section playoff berth last week when it clinched the Blossom Valley Athletic League championship.
The Acorns (12-1 overall, 9-0 league) barely missed out on the postseason last year but are now looking to do some damage once the CCS tournament starts on May 10. They’ve been impressive in some non-league wins, including victories over Los Gatos, Mitty and Serra. Not including the Stevenson match, Allen had 45 goals and 21 assists.
Fisher had 33 goals and 15 assists and Richey had 18 goals and 10 assists, with Ben Ledwith (26 goals) and Kenyan Castro (22 goals) also proving potent on the attack. Mateo Robledo and Dominic Knopf have led the way winning faceoffs, and Nolan Ledwith has been dominant controlling ground balls.
Allen said his highlight so far was a 10-9 overtime win over Mitty on April 3. The Monarchs don’t have a sparkling record, but that’s misleading because they play in the West Catholic Athletic League, far and away the best league in the CCS for boys lacrosse.
“That was my highlight because Mitty is really good and it’s nice beating a private school,” said Allen, who scored two goals in the victory.
Allen could end up playing at Westcliff University in Irvine, which currently has former Live Oak standouts Hunter Stocksick and Zach Souza on the roster. Allen started playing baseball at age 4 and lacrosse at 8 before taking up football in his freshman year.
Allen started lacrosse with the local Outlaws junior club program and now plays his travel ball with Chauncey Boys, which is based in Los Gatos. After Allen’s breakout junior season, he dedicated the first half of last summer to lacrosse tournaments before football practice started.
Allen said the club game is more competitive as teams are littered with all star-type rosters, and playing against tough competition helped improve his skills. However, Allen said in terms of excitement and joy, it doesn’t compare to playing with his childhood friends at Live Oak.
“The high school season is more fun but the summer experience was definitely helpful in getting me better,” he said.
As a second baseman, Allen has enjoyed watching Division I-signees Aidan Keenan and Landon Stump pitch this season. The dynamic duo were on point in a two-game set with a strong Christopher High team last week.
Stump had nine strikeouts in five shutout innings in the teams’ first matchup on April 18 and Keenan fanned 11 over six shutout innings in the second contest two days later.
“It’s great being able to play behind them and I’m definitely glad they’re on my team,” Allen said.