May 31, 2013
CIF State track trials: Cordova's Dorner runs nation's second fastest 400; Center's Howell qualifies on last high jump leap; Jesuit's Mitsch makes 100, 200 finals; Antelope's Ellis makes 200

CLOVIS - State 400-meter girls leader Nia Dorner of Cordova made it look easy and state boys high jump leader Xavier Howell of Center made it look hard at Friday's 95th annual CIF State Track and Field Championships in Clovis.

Despite a false start that disqualified two runners in her heat, Dorner ran the second fastest time in the United States this year and a lifetime best of 53.12 seconds to coast into tonight's finals.

Howell, the only California high jumper to soar 7 feet this year, needed to clear 6-7 on his final jump to land the 12th and final spot for today's finals.

The normally shy and poker-faced Dorner had a big smile when she greeted a friend shortly after she wowed the crowd with her sizzling run on the first of three 400 heats.
Only Ana Holland of Regis of Aurora, Colo., (52.49) has run faster this year.

"I didn't expect that," said Dorner, trying to become the Sac-Joaquin Section's first girls state sprint champion. "My goal was to run 53.23, so to run lower than that was shocking."

May 31, 2013
Optimist volleyball: North wins boys; South takes girls thriller

Behind team MVP Ryan Cernk of Rocklin, the North defeated the South 25-15, 15-25, 25-22, 25-21 in the 16th annual Optimist All-Star Boys Volleyball Game Thursday night at Capital Christian High School.

El Camino's Tanner Syftestad was named the South MVP.

In the 29th annual girls all-star game for graduating seniors, the South won a thriller over the North 10-25, 25-22, 25-22, 23-25, 15-13.

St. Francis' Allie Wegener was named the South MVP. Maddie Cannon from Rio Americano was the North MVP.

During the intermission between the boys and girls game, Mike Finnerty from SureWest Sports presented the "Team of the Year" trophy to the St. Francis volleyball team, which went 38-3 and won Sac-Joaquin Section and CIF Northern Regional Division I titles this season.

Present to accept the award were coach Alynn Wright and her four Optimist Game representatives - Wegener, Allison Child, Hannah Liserra and Gabriella Palmeri.

Rocklin girls coach Dave Muscarella also was inducted into the Optimist Hall of Fame.

May 30, 2013
Area players help lead Titans, Beavers into baseball regionals

Oregon State and Cal State Fullerton will enter the NCAA College Baseball Division I Regionals this weekend with a number of area players contributing to those teams' respective success.

Leading the way for Pac-12 champion Oregon State (45-10, 24-6) is junior catcher Jake Rodriguez from Elk Grove.

A Pac-12 first team selection, Rodriguez is hitting .272 with 32 RBIs and had thrown out 13 consecutive batters.

Former Jesuit standout Danny Hayes, a senior, plays first base for the Beavers and is hitting .270. Another former Marauder, junior pitcher Dan Child, is 4-1 with a 2.82 ERA.

Granite Bay sophomore Nate Esposito backs up Rodriguez and the two have combined to not allow a stolen base in 20 consecutive games.

Oregon State plays plays host to Texas-San Antonio (5 p.m.) and Texas A&M plays UC Santa Barbara (noon) in Friday's opening round of the Corvallis Regional.

Cal State Fullerton (48-8, 23-4), winners of the Big West Conference, are playing host this weekend to Arizona State, New Mexico and Columbia.

Former Elk Grove standout J.D. Davis, a designated hitter-pitcher, made the All-Big West first team. He's hitting .325 with 47 RBIs and also has a 2.14 ERA in 15 appearances for the Titans.

Former Rocklin player Austin Diemer, a sophomore outfielder, made the All-Big West second team. He is hitting .333.

Jared Deacon, a reserve junior catcher from Elk Grove, is hitting .306.

Freshman pitcher Miles Chambers from Rio Linda also is on the Titans' roster.

The Titans will play Columbia at 8 p.m. Friday. Arizona State plays New Mexico at 4 p.m. at Cal State Fullerton's Goodwin Field.

May 30, 2013
Sacramento-area athletes make Women's College World Series

Six Sacramento-area players are members of softball teams competing in the Women's College World Series that started today in Oklahoma City.

Lincoln's Stephanie Tofft is the starting third baseman for No. 2-seeded Florida (57-8). A junior, she is hitting .333 and with seven home runs and 51 RBIs. Florida lost 9-2 to No. 7 Tennessee (50-10) earlier today and will play Nebraska in an elimination game on Saturday.

Bear River's Stephanie Ceo is a freshman starting second baseman for No. 4 Texas (49-8), which is now playing No. 5 Arizona State (50-10). She is hitting .328.

May 30, 2013
Despite mammoth jump, Center's Howell still under the radar

Even after jumping 6-10 early in the season, then going 7 feet at last week's Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Championships, the phone hasn't been ringing off the hook for Center's Xavier Howell.

The 6-foot-4 Howell is a late bloomer. His best jump as a junior was 6-5, though he was injured for much of the season.

A basketball-first athlete most of his career at Center - he hasn't ruled out trying to play the sport at the next level - Howell has only received a couple of nibbles, no solid offers.

"I think there are schools that are missing out," said Center coach John Gallagher. "Maybe it's the size of our school or competing in a smaller division, but Xavier is a quality athlete."

Howell said his best option might be staying close to home and going to a community college to continue to hone his skills.

"It'll give me a chance to work on all my events," said Howell, who has competed in the long and triple jumps and sprints this season.

Howell admits, though, he's had a whirlwind week since his mammoth jump last Thursday. Howell got a standing ovation from his classmates the next day in his econ class.

May 29, 2013
Power surge sparks 36th Annual Optimist All-Star softball game

The 36th Annual Optimist All-Star softball game turned into a slug-fest tonight with the North beating the South 14-9 at Capital Christian High School.

North MVP Ali Aguilar of Casa Roble led the way by going three for three with two home runs.

South MVP Kristina Brown of Dixon hit home runs in the first and third innings and Oak Ridge's Lauren Bertoy had a grand slam in the seventh that briefly tied the game at 9-9.

Before the game, the Evening Optimist Club announced the induction of longtime softball coaches Don Mashburn and Bob Ramirez into the Hall of Fame.

During their tenure at Hiram Johnson and West Campus high schools, they won five Metro Conference and three Pioneer Valley League championships. Their teams made the playoffs 21 times, and they twice coached in the Optimist game.

Both still coach in the California Breeze ASA organization they founded.

May 28, 2013
Optimist All-Star boys, girls volleyball games set for Thursday

The 29th annual girls and 16th annual boys Optimist All-Star Volleyball Games for graduating seniors will be played Thursday at Capital Christian High School.

The boys game will start at 5 p.m. The girls match will follow 30 minutes after the boys match ends.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for students and $3 for those younger than 12.

May 28, 2013
Vanderdoes says he'll unveil college football plans soon

Eddie Vanderdoes sent via text message Tuesday afternoon that he will soon clear the air about his football future.

Speculation has run rampant of late that the national football recruit All-American defensive end from Placer High School would not head to Notre Dame, the program Vanderdoes signed with in February.

Reports ranged from character to academic concerns to a change of heart for Vanderdoes. Coaches in the last week insisted the 6-foot-4, 305-pound Vanderdoes known for his athletic ability and good nature is fine academically, and they insisted that character has never been a concern.

May 28, 2013
Optimist All-Star softball is Wednesday at Capital Christian

The 36th annual Optimist All-Star Softball Game for top graduating seniors will be played 6 p.m. Wednesday at Capital Christian High School.

Whitney's April Steele will coach the North Team. St. Francis' Al LoGiudice and Kevin Warren will co-coach the South Team.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for students and $3 for those younger than 12.

Here are the teams, as released by the Evening Optimist Club of Sacramento:

Savanah Johnson, Antelope; Ali Aguilar, Kaitlyn Garcia, Mckenzie Kenobbie, Casa Roble; Hanna Miller, Del Oro; Catlyn Cavender, Taylor Martinez, El Camino; Gia France, Granite Bay; Abi Lund, Lincoln; Tori Bellin, Gabriela Davis, Pioneer; Kassidy Kosmata, Placer; Katrice Crawford, Rio Linda; Mallory Asaro, Kendall Chambers, Rocklin; Delany DeMello, Kayla Fields, Stephanie Johnson, Roseville; Taylor Cotton, Kayli Shaw, Whitney; Amanda Horbasch, Frankie Orlando, Christal Vierra, Woodcreek. Head coach - April Steele, Whitney. Assistant coaches - Dough Gridley, Whitney; Donna Tofft, Lincoln.

Lucia Lopez, Taryn Sigl, Christian Brothers; Alyssa Penacho-Chavez, Angehleyna Wheat, Cordova; Stephanie Cello, Davis; Jenna Bassler, Kristina Brown, Dixon; Erikka Burke, Taryn Renowden, Elk Grove; Gail Oliver, Florin; Nicole Madalora, Franklin; Carly Hintz, Jenica Ruiz, Galt; Leia Gaspar, McClatchy; Lauren Bertoy, Jackie Schmaeling, Oak Ridge; Taylor Eilders, Paris Hallums, Ponderosa; Mollie Babich, Bailey O'Mara, St. Francis. Co-head coaches - Al LoGiudice, Kevn Warren, St. Francis; Assistant coaches - Serena Lim, Mike Martis, St. Francis.

May 27, 2013
Bradshaw Christian wins school's 17th section title in eight varsity seasons, winning D-VI baseball

A school of champions.

At the small-school level, it's hard to top Bradshaw Christian across the board in athletics, with the gym walls quickly filling up with blue Sac-Joaquin Section banners.

On Monday, the Pride beat Mariposa County 10-2 to win the program's second Division VI title since 2009 in a rematch of last season's finale. Mariposa won a year ago 4-3 to win the program's third crown since 2008.

Ace Austin Ragsdale struck out 11 in tossing a five hitter, and Zach Rogers drove in two as the Pride won the 17th section title in the school's eight-year varsity existence. Also this academic year, the Lady Pride won titles in basketball and soccer, all under athletic director Mike Ruble, also the girls basketball coach.

Also driving in runs for the Pride on Monday were Grant Heisinger, Seth Vandergrift, Josh Criswell, Grant Dragmire and Kyle Betts.

The Pride stole 12 bases in 13 attempts, three by Heisinger, who also scored two runs.
Another Pride highlight this season was beating D-I North champion Elk Grove 5-1 on a Ragsdale gem. Coach Drew Rickert has said that winning never gets old. He should know. He's won titles as the football coach, too.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
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May 27, 2013
Del Campo beats Benicia to take D-II title behind Long, Rodigo and Martinez

Paul Martinez can't move like he used to. There's no more side-to-side movement to save his life.

And even if he could, the Del Campo High School baseball coach was hopelessly outnumbered by a pack of Cougars bent on drenching him.

Martinez took the celebratory water cooler bath in basking in his team's 2-0 victory over Benicia to win the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II championship game on Monday night at Sacramento City College.

It's the third title for the storied Cougars, and the third for Martinez, in his first season at Del Campo. The Cougars won D-I titles under coach Harry Kawahata in 1985 and '95, and Martinez hoisted D-II blue championship banners in 1995 and '97 at San Juan.

"I'll wear it all the way home," Martinez said of his soaked Del Campo garb on a chilly night at Sacramento City College's Union Stadium that felt more like Candlestick Park. "I couldn't be happier for this group. It's a great group of guys. They worked so hard to get here."

Sam Long was terrific in his last high school start, tossing a five-hitter with six strikeouts and walking just one. He transferred to the Fair Oaks school following a nice run at Rosemont under Martinez. Both agonized over leaving Rosemont, an achieving school in the Sacramento City Unified School District, because of uncertainty of the athletic programs. Sports programs in the SCUSD were on the cutting block in each of the past two summers due to budgetary fears, but were retained.

Long is a junior academically, pulling straight-A's, but he plans to graduate in December and head to Sacramento State to start his scholarship tour for coach Reggie Christiansen. Winning the hearts of his teammates during early season drills after sitting out a CIF-mandated 30 days per transfer policy, Long tossed his second playoff gem. He struck out 14 in a 3-1 victory over Bethel of Vallejo in that best-of-three series.

"I can't put it into words how good this feels," Long said. "What a great team."

Long was backed by typical superb Del Campo defense, headed by infielders Jared Biggs, who had two hits, and Derek Rodigo, who scored the first run for a 1-0 lead in the second. Tim Hall drove home Biggs, who doubled, in the sixth to make it 2-0 as the Cougars touched Panthers ace Ryan Bohnet, who came in sporting a 9-0 record in allowing three earned runs all spring.

Also playing well this season and Monday for Del Campo: Tyler Swank, Mike Hatfield, Mike Ramirez, Davis Rodigo, Adrian Rocha and Tim Land.

So ends the journey for a host of Del Campo seniors who dreamed of winning a title to cap their careers. Biggs said that this will be bittersweet. Sweet for the title and bitter since so many are moving on. The players said they won this title for their school, their community, their families and their coach, who immediately offered structure within a program he grew up playing against.

Martinez played sports at nearby La Sierra 30 years ago. That school closed in 1983. Martinez lives barely a relay throw from the Del Campo, so he in effect returned to his neighborhood roots. He's a historian of the Del Campo program, able to peel off names and efforts.

Now he's part of that history with plans to hang a championship banner on the Del Campo backstop that displays the 1985 and '95 achievements.

"We won this for our coach," Rodigo said. "He was there every day getting the field ready. He gave us the tools to succeed."

Del Campo overcame a rash of injuries early in the season and came together in the Fresno Easter Tournament. A 12-game winning streak was doused by two losses to Christian Brothers in league play before the playoff run.
- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
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May 27, 2013
Eden strikes out 14 in a no-hit masterpiece in powering Yuba City to D-III title

In the long storied history of Yuba City High School baseball, Chandler Eden can stand alone with an effort for the ages.

The senior delivered one of the great pitching efforts in Sac-Joaquin Section postseason history, a 14-strikeout, no-hitter to beat Colfax 2-0 in the Division III championship game on Monday afternoon at Sacramento City College.

Relying on a fastball that hit 92 mph and a curve that kept the Falcons guessing and swinging, Eden powered the Honkers to the program's fifth title since 2007. Poised in play and hardly believing his good fortune afterward in a moment of humility, the 6-foot-2 Eden said he couldn't fathom doing this in his final prep outing. A teammate in the dugout blurted, "We're going to Disneyland!" after it was over. In truth, Eden and his senior classmates won't head to Southern California until after their June 7 graduation.

The Oregon State-bound ace also expects to be drafted next month. All in all, it's some senior swan song.

"I'll take it," Eden said, offering a shy grin of his first lifetime no-hitter, moments after striking out the side to end it. "I felt great, just a lot of fun."

Eden also produced the go-ahead run with with a screeching double down the right-field line in the top of the seventh inning to score Rocky Moreno, who pinch ran for Hayden Mejia. Mejia singled. Damon Bugarin drove in Sam Byers for a 2-0 lead. Byers pinch ran for Eden, who doubled.

"Great game for Chandler," Yuba City coach David Rodriguez said. "He's our horse. He showed that he's the best pitcher in the area."

Eden offset a superb showing by Devon Loomis. The Colfax senior tossed a five hitter with five strikeouts. He and Eden have known each other for years, including four seasons as teammates on travel teams.

"He pitched a great game and he's a great pitcher," Eden said. "I know how good he is."

Yuba City (21-11) thrives on pressure. The Honkers won eight times in walk-off fashion this season, including beating Lincoln twice in extra innings to take Games 2 and 3 of a best-of-three series to get here.

To that end, Rodriguez instructed his team to tip their caps and acknowledge the large crowd that packed into Union Stadium. Fans stood and cheered the post-game scene. Baseball remains a social happening in Yuba City. Rodriguez was a shortstop for the Honkers in 1985, competing for coach Joe Graben.

Rodriguez last decade coached with Jim Stassi, who win four successive titles, the last in 2010. Stassi's sons Brock, Max and Jake Stassi were all-time program greats, with Max a two-time Bee Player of the Year in 2008 and '09. Stassi, a former Honkers star, stepped down to watch his sons compete at the next level.

"Stassi is here, and I talk to him every day," Rodriguez said. "Joe Graben was big for me. Glad to have him here today, too."

Graben is the father of Jimmy Graben, the fine sports writer for the Marysville Appeal Democrat.

And proof that the cross-generation era is still in play for Yuba City, the Honkers feature first baseman Justin Noreen, son of 1978 Bee Player of the Year Bob Noreen from his Yuba City days.

"The community always supports us, always behind us," Rodriguez said. "People sent us 25 e-mails, and we posted some up in the dugout wall."

Colfax (20-8) was in its second section title game and first since 1999, a loss to Vanden. The Falcons got here by sweeping Games 2 and 3 over then one-loss Whitney in that best-of-three series.
- Joe Davidson
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May 27, 2013
Valley Christian wins section D-VII baseball, and the beard grows

The beard grows. And grows.

Sporting a hearty thatch at the end of his chin that seemingly stretches past his sternum and would surely make him a fill-in favorite for ZZ Top, Brad Gunter Jr. has no intention to shave. Not with this momentum.

Guner Jr. rejoiced in another championship Monday, his Valley Christian High School baseball team winning the Sac-Joaquin Section Division VII championship with a gritty 3-2 effort over Brookside Christian.

The Lions of Roseville three-peated at Sacramento City College under drizzly skies and won the program's fifth title in six seasons with six consecutive title appearances. In short, it's a dynasty with a coach known as "The Beard" at the helm. Gunter Jr. offered his beard as shelter from the rain after the game.

Jeremiah Moore struck out nine in tossing a five-hitter, and the Valley Christian junior ace had just enough production from his offense to defeat the Knights of Stockton (23-10).

Levi Haggerty scored on a wild pitch in the second inning for a 1-0 lead, Teagan Mowry had an RBI double in the third to make it 2-0 and Asher Hammargren walked with the bases loaded in the fourth to make it 3-1 for the Lions, who overcame illness and injury this season to celebrate yet again.

"They're a great group," Gunter Jr. said. "They're character kids more than anything. I worry more about that. The wins are the byproduct. When you don't have to worry about character, you can just coach baseball."

Valley Christian (20-12) was hammered by the flu and strep throat throughout the team's first 18 games, then endured all sorts of injuries while taking on a host of larger schools in nonleague play such as Oakmont, El Camino, Whitney and Pioneer.

The Lions lost to Elliott Christian of Lodi 7-3 in the opener of a best-of-3 playoff series before taking the series with 6-0 and 1-0 efforts, thanks to dominating pitching by Moore and co-ace Jimmy Shaw.

Moore and Shaw have yet to lose a playoff game in their careers. Shaw, a 6-foot-6 lefty, wanted to start Monday but was overruled by his coach. Gunter Jr. said Shaw has a live arm that needs some rest, his future too bright to push him.

"I've been holding him back all year, and why risk it?" Gunter Jr. said. "I know he wasn't too happy with me and probably his dad, too, but I have to worry about his future more than a game."

A year ago, Gunter Jr. was a fit of anxiety at this time of year. His father, Brad Gunter Sr., had been hospitalized with heart troubles. The founder of Valley Christian bounded off his hospital bed before the title game last May and proclaimed that he's not ready to go for good.

Gunter Sr. attended Monday's game, and afterward hugged every Lions player he could find. The old man, all grins and pride, is still mobile enough to corner a player to offer bear hugs and well wishes.

What added to the family feel for the Gunters was the role of Micah Gunter. He is the son of the coach, a sophomore starting shortstop who had a double and a walk against Brookside.

"I didn't think Dad was going to make it last year," Gunter Jr. said. "He's here. He's doing great. No idea how much he means to me. I was not in the same place mentally at this time last year. Very happy now. Talk about special. Dad's in the stands, and my son is on the field."

Valley Christian is a small school in enrollment only. It is big time in achievement - academics and athletically - and players cherish the titles just as much as those from larger schools. The Lions have also sent scores of players to the college ranks, with more headed there next season.

"We've got five or six guys playing in college next year and we had some scouts here today," Gunter Jr. said.

As for the beard, Gunter Jr. confessed to a trick. He applied dye to it in the morning, to keep it a robust red to match his hair.

"Just for Men, and comb it in, baby," Gunter Jr. cracked. "My wife (Megan) doesn't mind, so I'll keep it."

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
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May 27, 2013
Previewing the section championship baseball games

A closer peek at the three Sac-Joaquin Section championship baseball games at Sacramento City College today:

• Valley Christian vs. Brookside Christian, D-VII, noon

The Lions of Roseville are used to this stage, and thrive on it under veteran coach Brad Gunter Jr. VCA seeks its fifth D-7 championship in its sixth successive trip to the finals.

The Lions take on a Stockton-based team that is 23-6.

May 24, 2013
Plenty of speed at Sac-Joaquin Section Masters track meet

On a day of impressive and improbable performances, Antelope's Robert Ellis delivered one of the biggest wins of all in the Sac-Joaquin Section Track and Field Masters Championships Friday night at Elk Grove High School.

Ellis defeated favored Austin Mitsch of Jesuit by running a personal best 21.32 in the boys 200 meters, moving him to fifth in the state.

Mitsch finished in 21.48, his second fastest of the season as both qualified for next weekend's CIF State track finals in Clovis.

The thrilling 200 came shortly after Mitsch recovered from a poor start to nip Ellis in the boys 100. Mitsch ran 10.76 seconds; Ellis finished second in 10.82.

May 23, 2013
Defending North D-I champion Franklin eliminates Pleasant Grove; faces Elk Grove on Friday

The Franklin Wildcats wowed nobody down the stretch of the regular season, certainly not themselves.

Third place finishers in the Delta Valley Conference behind Davis and Elk Grove with a 14-13 overall record, the Wildcats have found a new gear in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I-North playoffs.

They bounced Rodriguez of Fairfield 13-0, eliminated Delta River League champion and Bee No. 4 Oak Ridge 4-1, sent home DVC champion and Bee No. 1 Davis 12-3, and on Thursday ushered home Bee No. 5 Pleasant Grove 6-1 at Sacramento City College.

May 23, 2013
Howell breaks 33-year-old Masters record with 7-foot high jump

Center senior Xavier Howell decided he'd qualify for his first CIF State Track and Field Meet with a bang.

Howell cleared 7 feet in the boys high jump final at Thursday's Sac-Joaquin Section Masters meet at Elk Grove High School, becoming California's first 7-footer of the 2013 season.

Howell's mark also bettered the 33-year-old Masters record of 6-11.50 set by Hiram Johnson's Ivan Morris.

It was the second oldest boys Masters Meet record. Atwater's Dave Porath still holds records in the shot and discus set in 1978.

Howell's jump also is second only to the overall section high jump record of 7-1 held by Bear Creek of Stockton's Darryl Feilbach (1997) and Mesa Verde's Aiona Key (2005).

That will make the once unsung Howell one of the favorites for the May 31-June 1 State championships in Clovis.

May 23, 2013
SureWest Sports names regional high school Coaches and Teams of the Years

The SureWest Sports Show is concluding the academic year with honors for coaches, athletes and teams.

Headed by tireless show host Mike Finnerty in polling area programs and media, SureWest is recognizing the following today, tomorrow and next week with in-person presentations:

* Ernie Cooper, Coach of the Year
The varsity football coach for Granite Bay since the school opened in the mid 1990s, Cooper and the Grizzlies had their crowning season last fall. Granite Bay overcame a slow start to the season amid a brutal nonconference schedule, then won the Sierra Foothill League championship and rolled in the postseason, capturing the Sac-Joaquin Section title over Oak Ridge and then beating St. Ignatius of San Francisco in the first CIF NorCal Division I championship. The capper was rallying late to beat nationally renowned Long Beach Poly in the CIF State D-I Bowl game.

May 22, 2013
Garcia walk-off hit leads Casa Roble over CBS for D-II title; Vintage beats Pleasant Grove; Pioneer tops Antelope

Casa Roble's Kaitlyn Garcia is used to being overshadowed.

She's a 5-foot-2 pitcher, which isn't exactly a college recruiter's dream.

But her Casa Roble coaches and teammates think the senior is pretty big stuff.

She showed why in Wednesday's Sac-Joaquin Section Division II softball championship game against familiar rival Christian Brothers at the Sacramento Softball Complex.

Despite giving up two quick runs in the top of the first, Garcia settled down and battled Falcons ace Haley Snyder, pitch for pitch the rest of the way.

May 22, 2013
Franklin High's Sean Nicholson hurdles catcher to score

Franklin High School's Sean Nicholson found a way to score in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I North playoff game at Sacramento City College on Monday night. Watch him hurdled Davis High catcher Hayden Duer and land by sliding his hand across the plate. Plate umpire Tom Ramirez ruled him safe, and Franklin went on to beat the Blue Devils 12-3. Franklin and Pleasant Grove play Thursday night at Sac City in a loser's bracket finale. Video provided by Gary Abelia.

May 21, 2013
Softball finals set: Pleasant Grove vs. Vintage, D-I; Casa Roble vs. Christian Brothers, D-II and Antelope vs. Pioneer, D-III

Pleasant Grove senior catcher Amber Murray says there is no secret why Elk Grove area softball is consistently so strong.

"We have a lot of girls who like to play, good coaching, and we perform well," Murray says.

Eagles coach Chris Murray credits Mary Jo Truesdale, Sheldon's Sac-Joaquin Section Hall of Fame coach for setting a high standard through the years.

May 21, 2013
Softball finals set: Pleasant Grove vs. Vintage, D-I; Casa Roble vs. Christian Brothers, D-II and Antelope vs. Pioneer, D-III

Pleasant Grove senior catcher Amber Murray says there is no secret why Elk Grove area softball is consistently so strong.

"We have a lot of girls who like to play, good coaching, and we perform well," Murray says.

Eagles coach Chris Murray credits Mary Jo Truesdale, Sheldon's Sac-Joaquin Section Hall of Fame coach for setting a high standard through the years.

May 21, 2013
Softball finals set: Pleasant Grove vs. Vintage, D-I; Casa Roble vs. Christian Brothers, D-II and Antelope vs. Pioneer, D-III

Pleasant Grove senior catcher Amber Murray says there is no secret why Elk Grove area softball is consistently so strong.

"We have a lot of girls who like to play, good coaching, and we perform well," Murray says.

Eagles coach Chris Murray credits Mary Jo Truesdale, Sheldon's Sac-Joaquin Section Hall of Fame coach for setting a high standard through the years.

May 20, 2013
Softball playoffs: Pleasant Grove stuns Vintage; Rocklin, Casa Roble rally for wins; Snyder strikes out 18 for Christian Brothers

Elk Grove Unified School District teams have defined Sac-Joaquin Section Division I softball for the past decade.

Elk Grove schools have won seven consecutive D-I championships and nine of the last 11.

In Monday night's winners' bracket games, it looked like more Elk Grove district dominance - for a while.

On one Sacramento Softball Complex diamond, Pleasant Grove shocked unbeaten and nationally ranked Vintage of Napa 3-1. On the adjacent diamond, Elk Grove led Bee top-ranked Rocklin 3-0 entering the bottom of the sixth inning.

May 20, 2013
Franklin belts Bee No. 1 Davis in D-I baseball; Del Campo beats Bethel to reach D-II finals

Still alive and kicking and eager for more: The Franklin Wildcats

Unranked entering the playoffs after an up-and-down regular season that included an 0-6 record against Delta Valley Conference front-runners Davis and Elk Grove, Franklin is still surging in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I North playoffs because it refuses to bow out or buckle under.

The defending champion Wildcats of Elk Grove beat Bee No. 1 Davis 12-3 on Monday night to bounce the Blue Devils, a strong event favorite entering the tournament.

May 20, 2013
Is Placer High School football star Vanderdoes on the move? Signed with Notre Dame

Eddie Vanderdoes could be on the move before he makes a move out of Placer County.

The 6-foot-4, 305-pound Placer High School senior defensive end signed a national letter of intent in February with Notre Dame, ending a whirlwind recruiting run, but there was rampant speculation on the Internet from media outlets, recruiting services and chat boards professing to be in the know on Monday night that the All-American may not head to South Bend.

Speculation about Vanderdoes ranged from character concerns to an academic fall out. Vanderdoes' coaches continued to rave about his upstanding character on Monday, and his father Eddie Vanderdoes on Monday night texted of his son, "One thing I can tell you is grades or eligibility is not and has never been an issue."

He added in the text, "let people speculate, but you will be the first to know, as always, when it's time to let people know."

Said Placer football coach Joey Montoya of his star player's character, "Absolutely he's gold. He is a selfless teammate and is highly dependable. I love that kid."

As for grades, Montoya said Vanderdoes is fine academically, "for Placer and the NCAA, he is for sure."

Vanderdoes was one of the most heavily recruited athletes in Sac-Joaquin Section history, overwhelming foes with his his burst off the line of scrimmage, his strength and desire. He was thrilled with his selection of Notre Dame after also strongly considering UCLA. He liked his visit to South Bend and spoke glowingly about the campus, the academics and the football tradition.

Still, there was a snag with Notre Dame seemingly from the start with how the school handled his scholarship commitment. The Vanderdoes family made it clear that they wanted Notre Dame to keep his decision mum to the media so he could enjoy a letter-of-intent signing ceremony later in the afternoon with several classmates who also signed scholarship deals. Most announcements are made early in the morning as colleges prefer to have signed letters as soon as they're allowed by the NCAA to receive them.

Notre Dame blew that seemingly simple request when Vanderdoes' name was in fact listed on the morning letter-of-intent announcement released to the media. His name was immediately taken off the sheet, but the secret was already out and hit the national feeds right away.

Vanderdoes said on letter of intent day in the Placer theatre that he was still excited to compete for the Irish. He even gave up baseball this spring, another sport in which he dominated, to focus on strength and conditioning workouts. Summer school for Notre Dame starts next month.

If Vanderdoes does indeed want out of his letter of intent, a binding contract, Notre Dame would have to release him, thus opening up a new flood of recruitment.

We will follow with updates as they come.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- On Podcast:

May 20, 2013
Granite Bay, Whitney to host NorCal boys volleyball playoffs

Granite Bay and Whitney will play host to quaterfinal matches Tuesday in the first CIF Northern California Regionals boys volleyball playoffs.

Sac-Joaquin Section champion and No. 4 seed Granite Bay (22-11) will play No. 5 Amador Valley of Pleasanton (27-8), the North Coast Section runners-up, at 7 p.m. in the Division I playoffs.

Section champion and No. 2 seed Whitney (30-3) will play No. 7 Washington of Fremont (17-18), the NCS runners-up, at 7 p.m. in the D-II playoffs.

Sac-Joaquin Section D-I runner-up and No. 7 Nevada Union (19-7) plays at NCS champion and No. 2 Deer Valley of Antioch (40-1). D-II section runner-up and No. 6 Vista del Lago (24-10) plays against Central Coast Section champion and No. 6 Mt. Madonna (30-8) in Watsonville.

Semifinals will be played on Thursday at home sites, with the finals on Saturday at Dublin High School in Dublin.

Granite Bay won its fourth D-I section title in the five years the section has sanctioned the sport in beating Nevada Union 3-1 on Thursday at Monterey Trail High School.

Whitney beat Vista del Lago in D-II for its first boys section volleyball title. Vista del Lago had won the previous two.

May 20, 2013
Granite Bay, Whitney to host NorCal boys volleyball playoffs

Granite Bay and Whitney will play host to quaterfinal matches tonight in the first CIF Northern California Regionals boys volleyball playoffs.

Sac-Joaquin Section champion and No. 4 seed Granite Bay (22-11) will play No. 5 Amador Valley of Pleasanton (27-8), the North Coast Section runners-up, at 7 p.m. in the Division I playoffs.

Section champion and No. 2 seed Whitney (30-3) will play No. 7 Washington of Fremont (17-18), the NCS runners-up, at 7 p.m. in the D-II playoffs.

Sac-Joaquin Section D-I runner-up and No. 7 Nevada Union (19-7) plays at NCS champion and No. 2 Deer Valley of Antioch (40-1). D-II section runner-up and No. 6 Vista del Lago (24-10) plays against Central Coast Section champion and No. 6 Mt. Madonna (30-8) in Watsonville.

Semifinals will be played on Thursday at home sites, with the finals on Saturday at Dublin High School in Dublin.

Granite Bay won its fourth D-I section title in the five years the section has sanctioned the sport in beating Nevada Union 3-1 on Thursday at Monterey Trail High School.

Whitney beat Vista del Lago in D-II for its first boys section volleyball title. Vista del Lago had won the previous two.

May 20, 2013
River Cats name High School Athletes of the Year and Players of the Year by sport

The Sacramento River Cats introduced a crop of All-City area high school award winners on Sunday at Raley Field.

The V-award winner in honoring Vicki Kockinis-McDermott went to Tara Halsted of Davis swimming while the Savage Award winner in honoring River Cats creator Art Savage went to Tyler Winston of Antelope.

Those honors and the process of selecting more than 400 athletes spanning mainstream CIF-sanctioned sports were part of an exhaustive, academic-year long search headed by Samantha Bottari, Tony Asaro and Mark McDermott. They polled athletic directors, coaches, media and themselves while also following their success in person and through various media accounts such as The Bee.

The River Cats Players of the Year by sport:

Softball - Ali Aguilar, Casa Roble
Tennis - Chloe and Lily Forlini, Granite Bay
Track - Patrianna Perry, Vacaville
Swimming - Tara Halsted, Davis
Golf - Kelsey Ulep, Whitney
Cross Country - Maggie Bell, Granite Bay
Soccer - Elizabeth Hutchison, Rio Americano
Volleyball - Gabriella Palmeri, St. Francis
Water Polo - Kaitlyn Cozens, St. Francis
Wrestling - Mallory Velte, Christian Brothers
Basketball -- Lynette Johnson, Kennedy

Football - Brandon Monroe, Del Oro
Track - Austin Mitsch, Jesuit
Soccer - Niko Hansen, Jesuit
Cross Country - Trent Brendel, Granite Bay
Wrestling - Pete Santos, Oakmont
Tennis - Sean Alves, Casa Roble
Baseball - Rowdy Tellez, Elk Grove
Basketball - Dakarai Allen, Sheldon
Water Polo - Connor Stapleton, Davis
Swimming - Matt Whittle, Davis

For the complete list of those earning All-City patches, go to

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- On Podcast:
- On Cable:

May 20, 2013
Carte and Winston are named SureWest Sports Athletes of the Year

With an equal emphasis on athletic ability and achievement, academic excellence and leadership and character, Katie Carte of Oakmont and Tyler Winston of Antelope have been named the SureWest Sports Athletes of the Year.

The seniors were selected by SureWest Sports host Mike Finnerty. In addition to chronicling their efforts, Finnerty polled area coaches, athletic directors and media in search of athletes competing in multiple sports.

Carte is a three-sport star and honors student. She was a powerful outside hitter for a Vikings team that won the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship in earning Bee All-Metro honors. She was the MVP of the soccer team while making All-Capital Athletic League. The UCLA-bound Carte qualified for this week's track and field Masters Championships in the 100, 200, long jump and triple jump.

Winston is a three-sport star who also expertly balanced his time to maintain honors student status. He was a Bee All-Metro and MaxPreps All-NorCal receiver/athlete who competed in the Bee Optimist All-Star Game. Winston was the point guard for a Titans team that roared to a Section D-II repeat. In baseball, Winston batted .422 at centerfield for a team that returned to the playoffs.

Winston is off to San Jose State to play football.

Carte and Winston said that they competed in three sports to maximize their high school experiences. Both encourage others to multi-task as student athletes. As Carte said, "It's the only time you can do it."

SureWest Sports Athletes or the Year:
2009: Brendan Lane (Rocklin) and Cora Harms (El Dorado)
2010: Lefi Letuligasenoa (Elk Grove) and Katie Simon (Roseville)
2011: Kyle Howarth (Granite Bay) and Belle Obert (Del Oro)
2012: Brendan Keeney (Granite Bay) and Carlee Gray (Elk Grove)

Go to for more information and highlights of shows.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- On podcast:

May 18, 2013
Woodcreek, Sheldon ousted; Rocklin advances in softball

By Trevor Horn

It's never easy being on top.

The defending Sac Joaquin Section Division I and II softball champions were both eliminated in dramatic fashion during the early morning games Saturday in the second round of the playoffs at Sacramento Softball Complex.

Woodcreek, the No. 4 ranked team by The Bee, lost to Enochs of Modesto on a controversial call in the sixth inning.

A routine pop up to second base turned into a 20-minute conversation between coaches, umpires and the tournament official.

Jordan Barber was on second base for the Eagles when the ball sailed into right field. An errant throw to third pulled Woodcreek third basemen Christal Vierra off the bag.

The umpire called interference after Barber was thrown out at home "by 40 feet" according to Woodcreek coach Art Banks.

Enochs was awarded the run, giving the Eagles a 1-0 lead with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning.

Tournament director Don Barney said the play was dead once Vierra would not allow Barber to get up right away after sliding in third base, nullifying the tag out at home.

Banks disagrees.

"I think it was the wrong call," Banks said. "They called an interference when there wasn't. And to award the run is ridiculous."

Woodcreek was the defending D-II section champions but, as a member of the Sierra Foothill League, the Timberwolves were bumped into D-I this season.

The Timberwolves got a runner on in the bottom of the seventh inning, but couldn't score.

"We didn't score and that was our fault," Banks said. "We didn't take care of our business. But you hate to have an umpire dictate the game. It's just one of those things, it happens with human beings. We make mistakes, but this was a big one. But, it happens."

Two time defending D-I champions, Sheldon, were also ousted from the playoffs in the morning game.

No. 12 ranked Sheldon tied the game up at 3-3 with two runs in the top of the seventh inning that began with an RBI single by freshman Dani Fines.

The two teams traded zeros in the box score until Fines scored on a single by Anessa Kaylor to take a 4-3 lead into the top of the 12th with the international playoff rule enforced. After 10 innings, the last batter out in the previous inning begins the next frame on second base.

West scored two runs in the bottom of the 12th to win.

More Field No. 2 Drama - Both of the Woodcreek and Sheldon games were played on Field 2 of the four field complex.

In the final afternoon game on Field 2, Benicia defeated No. 6 Christian Brothers 2-1 in eight innings.

Christian Brothers ace Haley Snyder pitched a complete game gem for the Falcons. The junior struck out 11 and gave up just five hits and two runs in the loss.

Rams Rollin' - Senoir Ali Aguilar scored the winning run for Casa Roble in the bottom of the seventh inning to defeat Vanden 7-6 in the D-II bracket.

No. 2 Casa Roble scored five runs in the fourth inning to take a 6-4 lead.

Vanden scored two runs in the top of the seventh to tie to game up before the celebration started for the Rams.

Aguilar had a first inning home run for the Rams (21-5) and walked to lead off the sevent. Casa Roble plays Benicia in the in the D-II semifinals at 6 p.m. on Monday.

Thunder Rollin' - Second year varsity head coach Marissa Hardy has used a heavy load of juniors this season thanks in part to her confidence in them as the junior varsity coach for the Thunder two seasons ago.

No. 1 ranked Rocklin withheld a bases loaded, one-out rally by West in the bottom of the seventh inning to advance with a 5-3 win in the afternoon game. Rocklin defeated Buhach Colony 6-1 in the morning game.

"I really thought all along that this team should be at the top, at least in the top three," Hardy said. "I think it starts with seniors. But the juniors have been huge contributors. They bought into me at the JV level, but now they are bringing to the varsity level."

Rocklin has a 10-game winning streak thanks large part to solid pitching from junior Maddie Wuelfing and great hitting from fellow juniors Sam Moffat an, Delanie Chrismas and Cali Lewis.

Rocklin will face No. 7 Elk Grove on Monday.

May 18, 2013
Franklin beats Davis 4-3 on PKs for historic D-I girls soccer win

Senior goalie Marcela Young made two diving saves and Julia Alltop, Lauren Williams, Lauren Aldana and Christiana Atteberry scored goals as Franklin defeated Davis 5-4 on penalty kicks in today's Sac-Joaquin Section Division I girls soccer championship game at Cosumnes Oaks High School.

It marked the first time that an Elk Grove Unified School District team won a girls soccer title since the playoffs started in 1981. The Wildcats also are the first area team other than Davis or St. Francis to win a D-I title since Casa Roble in 1997.

As expected from two teams that split regular-season matches and tied for the Delta Valley Conference, the match was a fast and physical back-and-forth battle.

Though both had a handful of good scoring opportunities, Davis (20-5-1) and Franklin (17-3-0) played scoreless through two 40-minute regulation periods and two 10-minute overtimes.

May 18, 2013
Jesuit defeats Gonzaga 21-16 to win national rugby title

jesuitrugby.jpegDevin Kelly had two five-point tries, Jimmy Landis added a third and Ethan Gallagher had three two-point conversion kicks as Jesuit defeated Gonzaga Prep of Washington, D.C., 21-16 today to win the National Invitational Boys High School Rugby championship in Elkhart, Ind.

Jesuit also beat Xavier of New York City 39-20 in Friday's semifinals and Herriman of Utah 18-17 in Thursday's quarterfinals.

It is Jesuit's seventh national rugby title.

PHOTO: Jesuit's rugby team celebrates their victory. Special to The Sacramento Bee/Martha Gates

May 18, 2013
Bella Vista tops Ponderosa 2-1 for first section title since 1988

Longtime Bella Vista girls coaches Christie Wheeler and Matt Contreras say they've been knocking at the door of a Sac-Joaquin Section girls soccer title for some time.
On Saturday, they booted the door wide open.

Behind goals from Sami Donovan and JV call-up Chelsea Allen, the Broncos defeated Ponderosa 2-1 in the Division II championship game at Cosumnes Oaks High School.

It was Bella Vista's first section girls title since winning three D-I titles in a row from 1986 to 1988. Three other times Bella Vista lost in a section title game, the last in 2007 to Rio Americano in D-III.

"We've been on the door for the last several years," Wheeler said. "How'd we open the door? Teamwork. We've been a real good passing team, we peaked at the right time and it was our time."

The last three years, Bella Vista lost in the semifinals, including a penalty kick loss to Granite Bay in 2011.

"They listened and bought into the system we have, and they play really good soccer," Contreras said. "They kind of mirrored the boys' season."

The Bella Vista boys, coached by Matt and Zach Contreras, won their second consecutive D-II title last fall. The boys were at Cosumnes Oaks Saturday rooting on their classmates.

Senior midfielders Julia Platter and Lisa Elledge and defender Madeleine Dyckes are the anchors.

The win didn't come easy. Bella Vista barely missed wide on a handful of attempts and Ponderosa had three corner kicks in the final few minutes. Freshman goalie Shannon Fuchs punched one away.

Ponderosa suffered a big loss 20 seconds into the match when captain Corine Tank suffered an apparent broken arm.

May 18, 2013
Rio Americano 3-peats with 5-0 D-III soccer win vs. Benicia

Mel Hoskins had two goals and Paige Borgorgno two assists and Lizzie Moulton, Elizabeth Hutchison and Julia Butterfield each added a goal to lead Rio Americano to a 5-0 win over Benicia this afternoon in the Sac-Joaquin Section girls soccer Division III championship match at Cosumnes Oaks High School.

It was Rio Americano's third consecutive section title and fifth in the last seven years, all in D-III. The Raiders (18-0-2) lost in overtime, both to Benicia (20-3-1), in the 2008 and 2010 finals.

"The chemistry on and off the field is amazing - all 23 of them, it's not a small squad," said Rio Americano coach Jenn Smiley, a former Raiders standout. "They're a lot of fun, hard working and driven. And you see it on the field."

The Raiders are ranked No. 4 nationally in the National Soccer Coaches Association of American spring rankings.

May 18, 2013
Enochs beats Woodcreek on interference call in D-I softball

By Trevor Horn

Bee Correspondent

Enochs of Modesto eliminated Woodcreek 1-0 on an interference call in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I softball playoffs this morning at the Sacramento Softball Complex.

Enochs sophomore Jordan Barber was tagged out by Woodcreek catcher Frankie Orlando at home plate in the bottom of the sixth inning. But the umpire ruled that third baseman Christal Vierra interfered with Barber before she reached home, and Enochs was awarded the run.

Tournament director Don Barney said the play was dead once Vierra would not allow ith Barber to get up right away after sliding in third base, nullifying the tag out at home.

Woodcreek was the defending D-II section champions but, as a member of the Sierra Foothill League, the Timberwolves were bumped into D-I this season.

Enochs now moves into the double-elimination portion of the tournament and will play unbeaten Vintage of Napa at 2 p.m.

Follow Trevor Horn on Twitter @trevhorn

May 18, 2013
Colfax tops league rival Placer 2-0 for D-IV girls soccer title

Kelly Harris scored in the eighth minute and Tori Henry in the 39th as Colfax defeated league rival Placer 2-0 in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV girls soccer championship today at Cosumnes Oaks High School in Elk Grove.

It was Colfax's first girls section soccer title, and the Falcons (14-5-4) avenged their two one-goal losses to the Hillgals (12-10-1) in the Pioneer Valley League this season.

Both finished as league co-champions with 7-2-1 records.

May 17, 2013
Softball pitching gems lead to wins for some, losses for others

Even on a day when many pitchers dominated, some walked away as hard-luck losers in tonight's opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III softball playoffs at the Sacramento Softball Complex.

Woodland's Kelsey Goodner struck out 11 and didn't allow a hit against Bear River and still lost 2-1.

Bear River's Alix Alfke scored the winning run in the fifth inning on a two-base throwing error after she walked and was sacrificed to second by Alex Ecke.

Goodner, however, walked six.

Cal-bound Taylor Cotton of Whitney struck out 12 and allowed three hits. But she also was on the losing end of a 1-0, eight-inning decision to Pioneer, thanks to Gabriela Davis' two-out, walk-off double over the center fielder's head.

But there were happy winners too.

May 17, 2013
Pioneer shocks Whitney 1-0 in D-III softball do-or-die opener

Pioneer softball coach Linda Merrida and her seniors know from experience the frustration of the single-elimination opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section softball playoffs.

Last year the Patriots came in as the top seeded team from the Tri-County Conference and lost 5-4 to Vanden, a No. 3 seed that had to win an outbracket game in order to face the Patriots.

This year offered an even more challenging scenario.

Pioneer again was the top seed from its league. And on Friday afternoon's Division III first round at the Sacramento Softball Complex, the Patriots drew Whitney, an even more deceptive third seed.

The Wildcats played most of the Capital Athletic League season without Cal-bound star pitcher Taylor Cotton. They finished third in league behind Cordova and Antelope without her.

But despite another dominating performance by Cotton, Pioneer prevailed 1-0 in eight innings on senior first baseman Gabi Davis' walk off double over the center fielder's head.

"Last year we had a pretty good team, and we came out and lost a game we led most of the way," Merrida said. "Our returning players remembered what happened."

The left-handed Cotton struck out 12 and allowed only three hits. But she also walked three and hit three, including Erin Lipelt to lead off the bottom of the eighth. Lipelt stole second before Davis' dramtic hit.

Pioneer sophomore Angelica Dark allowed eight hits and struck out only two, but she didn't walk a batter and was the beneficiary of several defensive gems.

One was right fielder Amaray Bair's over-the-head stab of a liner that by the speedy Cotton in the seventh that would have been a double, perhaps a triple.

Whitney had reached the D-III section finals the previous two seasons.

May 15, 2013
Franklin stuns red-hot Oak Ridge; Elk Grove rallies to beat Woodcreek

Look who's warming up just as the weather seems to be cooling down.

The Franklin Wildcats.

Days after rolling Rodriguez in Fairfield in a Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoff opener 13-0, Franklin stunned the hottest team in the field, beating Oak Ridge 4-1 at Sacramento City College on Wednesday night to snap the Trojans' 12-game winning streak.

Connor Adams tossed a complete-game gem, scattering five hits through six innings and escaping a last-inning jam for Franklin. Hank LoForte had three hits and Tyler Blake crushed a home run for the Wildcats, who placed third in the Delta Valley Conference a year ago and roared to the D-I North finals and won it. Franklin placed third again in the DVC this season behind Bee No. 1 Davis and No. 2 Elk Grove and playing the role of destroyer again.

Franklin is primed for another run, and look who it draws on Saturday at noon at Sac City: Elk Grove.

"That's our MO - get into the playoffs," said Blake, the program's all-time home run leader. He has hit a homer in four consecutive games. "I'm seeing the ball really well right now...To beat a team as good as Oak Ridge is an honor. Never doubted our team."
Franklin (16-13) was Bee ranked most of the season until falling out down the stretch. Wildcats coach Bryan Kilby said his bunch wasn't a ranked-worthy club a bit ago, but that was then. This is now - new life.

"This is a great group," said Kilby, The Bee's Coach of the Year last season. "Our guys responded. I love to win and I'm as competitive as anyone, but the regular season isn't the most important thing. This is what counts."

Adams said Franklin understands, "a sense of urgency this time of year, and it's sparked us."

Adams is one of those feel-good student athletes who balances his hectic schedule in maximizing his senior year. He was a team captain and center for the football team that had a school-record campaign, and he pitches and competes in baseball with a football mentality. He fears nothing.

Adams kept hitting the outside corner against Oak Ridge in keeping a prolific team off balance. Oak Ridge won the Delta River League by beating Pleasant Grove twice and Jesuit once. The Trojans were led by team leader and shortstop star Alec de Watteville this season. Ace Austin Root took the loss, though he struck out seven. He's only a junior. Oak Ridge turned a 1-2-3-2 triple play in the top of the seventh, but the feel-good moment ended when Adams recorded a groundout to end it.

Adams is a 4.1 student headed to BYU to study neuroscience. The grin on his face suggests he's not quite ready to end this season.

* Elk Grove 8, Woodcreek 5 - Rowdy Tellez had a two-run homer in the first inning, a soaring shot over the right-field fence, and he effectively won it in the top of the eighth inning with screaming RBI single to left to lift the Thundering Herd in extra innings.

Tellez homered off Tyler Milani in the first and touched hard-throwing Stephen Nogosek in his last at-bat in an entertaining showdown of Major League Baseball draft prospects heavy on power.

Nogosek hit 93 mph several times on radar guns aimed his way. He and Tellez embraced afterward and congratulated each other.

Nogosek could sign a pro contract after his likely draft selection next month, or he could attend Oregon on scholarship. Tellez could ink a pro deal or attend USC on scholarship, and face Nogosek in some Pacific-12 showdowns.

Nogosek is one of the greatest flame-throwers in regional history, and Tellez one of most entertaining home-run and RBI producers. Tellez has 168 career RBIs, second most in Northern California history.

A student of the game, Tellez said he could read Nogosek's pitches, that he "tipped them" with the way he shook his hand before delivery.

"He's the best arm in the area, no doubt, awesome," Tellez said of Nogosek. "I loved facing him. He plays the game the right way. Very respected player."

Aftrer Tellez made it 6-5, David Smith had a sacrifice fly for a 7-5 lead with Tellez scoring on an overthrow to make it 8-5. Nogosek struck out four in his 2.1 innings of relief. Tellez also walked twice and had three RBIs. Smith earned the win, getting a game-ending strikeout. Starting pitcher Mikey Wright struck out six for the Herd.

Veteran Elk Grove coach Jeff Carlson has won his share of championships and coached his share of prospects, including some that reached the big leagues, but he never tires of a good outing.

"Big time guys and performances," he said of a lot of players in general. "Rowdy had a great at-bat against Nogosek at the end, outstanding. The scouts see this, how guys like Rowdy are big competitors and how they're great teammates."

* Thursday's games: Vacaville plays No. 4 Pleasant Grove at 4 p.m. at Sac City, followed by top-ranked Davis against No. 5 Jesuit at 7 p.m.

Pleasant Grove is coming off two wins last week against Jesuit to defend a share of its Delta River League title, and Monday's win over Rocklin. Vacaville, winners of the Monticello Empire League, is led by ace Elway Santistevan (6-2). He eliminated Jesuit 3-2 in a playoff opener last season and battled Davis in a 2-1 setback in a loser's bracket finale.

Davis and Jesuit have faced each other before in the postseason and in recent seasons have met in nonleague rivalry games at Raley Field. The teams are coached by alums, Davis with Dan Ariola and Jesuit with Joe Potulny.
Davis will start ace Matt Trask and Jesuit will go with No. 2 arm Chris Loeb.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- On Podcast:

May 15, 2013
Davis, Franklin advance to D-I girls soccer title game; Bella Vista and Ponderosa to meet in D-II; Rio Americano returns to D-III

Here are the results from today's Sac-Joaquin Section girls soccer semifinals.

Championships will be played on Saturday at Cosumnes Oaks High School in Elk Grove and Lincoln of Stockton.

We will update when the section releases sites and times. While unofficial, it would appear that the D-I through D-IV games will be at Cosumnes Oaks.

Franklin-EG 1, St. Francis 0
Davis Sr. 1, Oak Ridge 0

Bella Vista 3, St. Mary's 1
Ponderosa 1, Tracy 0

Rio Americano 1, Oakdale 0
Benicia 3, El Camino 1

Colfax 2, East Union 1
Placer 2, Vista del Lago 0

Liberty Ranch 3, Hilmar 1
Centra Catholic d. West Campus

Capital Christian 5, Millennium 0
Amador 9, Golden Sierra 0

Forest Lake Christian at Bradshaw Christian, not reported
Ripon Christian 4, Victory Christian 0

May 15, 2013
Franklin tops St. Francis 1-0 to reach girls soccer title match

All-Delta Valley Conference sophomore Lauren Williams scored early in the second half on a 10-yard blast and senior goalie Marcela Young had five impressive second-half saves to lead No. 3 Franklin past No. 2 St. Francis 1-0 in today's Sac-Joaquin Section Division I girls soccer semifinals in East Sacramento.

Franklin will play the winner of tonight's Davis/Oak Ridge game for the championship on Saturday at Cosumnes Oaks High School. The time is still to be determined.

It will mark Franklin's second consecutive appearance in the D-I final.

The Wildcats lost 2-1 to St. Mary's of Stockton last May in the D-I title game played in Stockton, though without Williams or sophomore defender Aleah Kelley. Both were in Germany playing in a club tournament.

The skilled and physical Williams' scored on a ball St. Francis was unable to clear in its goal area after a deflection.

"She hit a rocket," said Franklin coach Eliseo Lopez. "Lauren is very talented, very smart, very key."

Franklin's speedy senior forward Tatyana Garrett, a UC Irvine scholarship signee, misfired on a couple of breakaway attempts. Otherwise St. Francis dominated second half time of possession.

But the Troubadours couldn't slip one past Young, despite a couple of point-blank shots.

May 14, 2013
Sheldon, Woodcreek, Whitney, Roseville softball win today

Defending Sac-Joaquin Section softball champions Sheldon and Woodcreek have advanced to Saturday's Round of 16 after winning outbracket games today.

Here's a short recap of games reported to The Bee:

SHELDON 9, NAPA 7 in South Sacramento
- The two-time defending D-I champion Huskies (14-12) held a 9-0 lead after six innings, then held off the Indians (17-11). Freshman shortstop Jordan Fines went four-for-four with a double and two RBIs and Anessa Kaylor had a solo home run, her seventh of the season, to lead Sheldon. Sheldon will play West of Tracy 11 a.m. Saturday at the Sacramento Softball Complex.

WOODCREEK 8, TOKAY 1 in Roseville - Jenna Curtan went three-for-four and Amanda Horbasch, Nicole Miller and Jasmine Dwerlkotte had two hits apiece as last year's D-II champion Timberwolves (20-8), now playing in D-I, won handily over the Tigers (17-9). Horbasch scattered five hits to earn the win. Woodcreek will play Enochs of Modesto 9 a.m. Saturday at the Sacramento Softball Complex.

May 14, 2013
Sheldon softball beats Napa despite Jekyll-Hyde performance

Sheldon played like a team that has won the last two Sac-Joaquin Section Division I softball championships for the first six innings of Tuesday's outbracket opener against visiting Napa.

With a combination of speed and power, sure-handed defense and dominating pitching by sophomore Brooke Coyne, the Huskies led 9-0 with an inning to play.

Napa then strung together six hits and a couple of Sheldon errors to close to 9-7 before freshman shortstop Jordan Fines scooped up a grounder and beat, by an inch or so, the Napa runner to the second base bag for the final out.

May 14, 2013
Antelope big man Isaiah Ellis signs with Chico State

Antelope senior center Isaiah Ellis, this season's Capital Athletic League boys MVP, has signed a letter of intent with Chico State.

The 6-foot-7 Ellis was a key three-year player and defensive force for the Titans, helping them to win back-to-back Sac-Joaquin Section Division II titles as well as a D-II runners-up finish his sophomore season.

A Bee All-Metro second team selection, Ellis averaged 12.9 points, 8.4 rebounds and 2.4 blocks before breaking his foot in the Titans' 70-63 D-II title win over Grant.

Isaiah's twin, Tyler, signed last month with the New Mexico State women's basketball team.

May 14, 2013
Rocklin to hold signing event for wrestler, tennis player

Rocklin High School will hold a signing ceremony Monday morning for wrestler Olivia Seppinni and tennis player Shelby Kubota.

Seppinni, who finished sixth at 126 pounds at this year's CIF State Invitational Girls Wrestling Championships, will accept a scholarship to wrestle for McKendree University of Lebanon, Ill, as part of a new women's NCAA Division II wrestling program.

Kubota will sign with California Lutheran University, an NCAA Division III program.

May 14, 2013
Del Oro golfer Justin Raskin to sign with William Jessup

Del Oro senior Justin Raskin, who helped the Golden Eagles finish third on Monday at the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters boys golf championships in Stockton, will sign a letter of intent this afternoon with William Jessup University in Rocklin.

Raskin, Del Oro's captain, shot a 72 to lead the Golden Eagles to a team total of 386 and earn the last team qualifying spot for Monday's CIF Northern California Regionals in Patterson.

The Golden Eagles finished one stroke ahead of Sierra Foothill League rival and defending CIF state champion Granite Bay.

May 14, 2013
Sierra, Hughson big favorites in D-IV and V softball playoffs

Here is a look at the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV through VII playoff softball fields.


• Sierra (21-2): Six-foot-one junior Allie Walljasper, an LSU verbal commit, does it all for the Valley Oak League champions from Manteca. She's hitting .481 with 20 RBIs and four home runs. She's also 18-2 with an 0.47 ERA and 227 strikeouts in 120.1 innings.

• Cosumnes Oaks (15-11): Despite a rollarcoaster season, the Wolfpack have talent, led by .400 or better hitters Julia Morales (.515, 20 RBI), Sabryna Scott (.413, 20 RBIs) and Samantha Kile (.403).

• Kimball (21-6): The young Tracy school, in just its third varsity season, already has won 65 games and is led by junior stars Arianna Hawkins (.622 average, 40 RBIs) and Danielle Lallos (.500, 36 RBIS).

May 13, 2013
Ponderosa's Pereira and Jesuit team win Masters golf titles

Ponderosa's Corey Pereira shot a four-under 68 to take medalist honors and Jesuit won the team championship with a seven-over 367 at today's CIF Sac-Joaquin Section boys Masters golf championships at The Reserve at Spanos Park in Stockton.

Woodcreek's Bryce Johnson and Christian Brothers' Andrej Bevins joined Pereira in qualifying as individuals for the CIF Northern California Regional championships next Monday at Diablo Grande in Patterson. Both shot 70s.

Austen Sandoval and Mark Cobey led the way with 71s for Jesuit. Chad Kubes shot a 74, Connor Bell a 75 and Steven Griggs a 76 for the Marauders, who also won the D-I North section title.

Oak Ridge (385) placed second and Del Oro (386) took third to also advance to the NorCal playoffs. Charlie Cameron led Oak Ridge with a 72. Justin Raskin was Del Oro's top individual with a 72.

Granite Bay, the defending Masters and CIF State champions, finished fourth with a 387.

D-II section champion Christian Brothers was fifth with a 391 and Oakmont sixth with a 396.

East Union's Will Brink won a playoff with Turlock's Teo Chiesa for the final NorCal individual berth. Both shot 71s.

May 13, 2013
Sizing up the Sac-Joaquin Section baseball playoffs, all divisions

Sizing up the Sac-Joaquin Section baseball fields...

* Davis (21-6)
With a flair for late dramatics, the Blue Devils beat Elk Grove twice on walk-off hits by Matt Trask, also a superb ace joined by Bobby Young, Jake Miille and Adam Inoye.
* Elk Grove (23-5)
The power source comes from Rowdy Tellez (.458, 13 2Bs, 6 HRs, 33 RBIs), the leadership from Dom Nunez (.397, 31 RBI) and the arms in David Smith (7-2) and Michael Wright (5-0).
* Granite Bay (17-9)
The Grizzlies join the D-I field after years of success in D-II and have pitchers in Travis Magness (6-2) and Gabe Meza (5-3) to make a run for coach Pat Esposito.
* Jesuit (20-7)
The Marauders offer two power arms for a title run in Julian Barron (4-2) and Chris Loeb (6-0) for veteran coach Joe Potulny, who seeks his sixth section title.
* Oak Ridge (19-8)
The Trojans are riding a 12-game winning streak, including two wins over Pleasant Grove, thanks to the defense of SS Alec de Watteville (.370) and arms Tommy Hummer (6-1) and Austin Root (6-2).
* Pleasant Grove (21-7)
The Eagles beat Jesuit two out of three last week for a warm up. Pitchers Matt Stafford (7-1), Dalton Gomez (7-3) and Josh Adams (5-2) lead the way, with Adams offering HR power, too.
* Woodcreek (20-6)
The X-factor in this tournament is the powerful right arm of ace Stephen Nogosek, who is rounding back into form after a break to rest for the defending D-II champions, who also feature pitcher Tyler Milani.

* Del Campo (20-7)
The Cougars have sluggers in Derek Rodigo (.452, 7 HR,) and Jared Biggs (.449) and a staff of Sam Long (4-0), Biggs (4-0), Tim Hall (3-0) and Mike Ramirez (3-0).
* Bella Vista (18-9)
Mike Phelan (.333, 25 RBIs) leads the offense an Matt Gunter (7-1) and Brayden Gomez (6-2) the staff that would love a rivalry showdown with Del Campo.
* Benicia (24-3)
Willie Calhoun (.425, 6 HR, 27 RBIs) fuels the offense and aces Ryan Bohnet (7-0, 0.46 ERA) and Steven Daini (6-0) the staff.
* Rosemont (23-5)
The Wolverines are eager for a title breakthrough behind Kevin Beatty (.388, 28 RBIs) and aces Tyler Masterson (8-1) and Jalen Brown (7-2)

* Whitney (26-1)
J.R. Robinson can do it all, batting .585, 15 2Bs, 6 3Bs, 46 RBIs and 7-1 with 0.91 ERA for the surging Wildcats, a team that can hit and pitch. Seek 1st title.
* Pioneer (18-9)
The Patriots have three scholarship arms to lead the way in Robert Daugherty (6-2, 1.88), Thomas Galart (6-2, 1.02) and Zack Aukes (1.40).
* Rio Americano (15-11)
The Raiders have some big wins this season (Buchanan-Fresno, Rocklin and Del Campo) and are hitting .352 as a team.
* Yuba City (17-10)
The Honkers have four D-III titles and seek another behind ace Chandler Eden (4-2, 1.70)

* Vista del Lago (23-4)
The Eagles have a culture of winning on campus and have a number of football players in baseball uniform as an example under coach Scott Steffens.
* Oakdale (19-8-1)
Perhaps it's foolish to not list the Mustangs as the favorite as they have won the last three titles and 5 of 6
* Central Catholic (21-5)
A small-school power with seven D-V titles since 2003 and four in D-IV since 1998.
* El Dorado (18-8)
The Cougars have the arms for a push in Tim Hinrichs (6-2), Owen Mackendrick and Nicolaus Bonniksen (7-3) and have had a nice run of success over the years.

* Capital Christian (21-5-1)
The Cougars are batting .358 as a team, led by Mauricio Dubon (.453) and Ben Ritchey (.493) and have been in the title game three times since 2007 with a crown in 2009.
* ESCALON (18-8-1)
The Cougars seek a section four-peat and have a staff to make it interesting with Brent Montgomery (8-1), Ben Hood (5-2) and Nathan Chunn (4-2)
* Dixon (12-12)
The Rams have a slugger to fear in Korey Hall (.409, 27 RBIs) and pitchers John Jordan (5-0) and Nathan Karber (1.95 ERA).

* Bradshaw Christian (20-6)
The Pride seek their third successive title game appearance and second crown in that span under coach Drew Rickert, who has ace Austin Ragsdale (6-1) and top hitter Grant Heisinger (.520).
* Mariposa (19-2)
The Grizzlies of the southern part of the Section won titles in 2008, 2010 and last season, and prefer not to detail any statistics on MaxPreps in an effort to remain sly. Truth is, this is a great program.
* Le Grand (13-11)
The Bulldogs have a recent 2-1 Southern League triumph of Mariposa that gives them great optimism for a rematch.

* Valley Christian (16-10)
Never mind the overall record. Consider the schedule that guru coach Brad Gunter Jr. has put together to test his formidable squad as it seeks a three-peat and the program's fifth title since 2008.
* Brookside Christian (20-6)
The Knights reached the title game three times since 2007, winning it in once, and looms opposite of Valley Christian.
* Elliott Christian (19-3-1)
The Eagles of Lodi have an ace in Logan Vickers (9-0, 0.25 ERA) who has dominated all comers.
- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- Playoff preview/projection on podcast:

May 12, 2013
Section swim finals offers bittersweet twist for Davis coach

Davis swim coach Tracy Stapleton was proud of his girls and boys performances at Saturday's Sac-Joaquin Section swim championships.

The girls overwhelmed the competition in finishing first while the boys were a close second to champion Jesuit.

But the event was a little bittersweet, too.

Stapleton's son Connor, a water polo All-American and a key member of the swim team, was unable to participate.

The Stanford-bound senior and USA Junior National Team member tore the meniscus in his left knee at a swim meet in Roseville and had surgery in April.

"He was just warming up and made an awkard movement," Tracy Stepleton said. "But his surgeon really believes there was some kind of pre-existing injury. Connor played baseball, soccer and basketball as a kid. It's tough. But injuries happen in sports, though not so much in swimming. You just have to move on."

May 11, 2013
Davis girls overwhelm the competition at section swim finals; Wieser breaks 20-year-old record in helping Jesuit to boys title

Davis High's Tracy Stapleton has coached swimming and/or water polo for 25 years at the school.

But even he admits to still getting butterflies.

So when the first event got underway Saturday morning at the Sac-Joaquin Section swim championships at Tokay High School in Lodi, Stapleton was busy gnawing on his fingernails.

"That first event, the medley relay, is so important, it sets the tone," Stapleton said. "But once we get through a couple of events, I settle down."

Stapleton's swimmers settled for something special.

May 9, 2013
Franklin, St. Francis, Davis, Oak Ridge win in D-I girls soccer; Platter has four goals to lead Bella Vista past Titans in D-II

Lauren Williams scored 10 minutes into the second half to lead Franklin to a 1-0 win over Vintage of Napa in today's Sac-Joaquin Section Division I girls soccer quarterfinals in Elk Grove.

No. 3 Franklin, trying to return to the D-I championship game it lost to St. Mary's of Stockton (now in D-II) last season, will play at No. 2 St. Francis in Wednesday's 3:30 p.m. semifinals.

St. Francis, behind goals by Beverly Kyalwazi and Anna Gregg and assists by Katie Cloninger and Jenna Mark, advanced with a 2-0 win over McClatchy.

Top-seeded Davis, which defeated Granite Bay 1-0 on a goal in stoppage time, will play host to No. 5 Oak Ridge, a 2-1 winner over Enochs of Modesto, in Wednesday's other semifinal.

Here are other quarterfinal highlights, as reported to The Bee:

May 9, 2013
Former area prep softball players make All-WAC first team

Former Rio Linda High School softball standout Alex Newman and San Juan High graduate Markesha Collins have made the All-Western Athletic Conference women's softball first team.

Newman, a senior at New Mexico State, has a 1.83 ERA and is 23-12, including today's 3-0 complete game win against Louisana Tech in the WAC playoffs in Ruston, La.

Collins, a senior outfielder at San Jose State, is hitting .350 with a team-leading 35 RBI.

Top-seeded San Jose State plays No. 2 New Mexico State in Friday's WAC semifinals.

May 9, 2013
Valley High School baseball players come to rescue of girl pinned under car

By Joe Davidson

Valley High School baseball players heard a girl in distress Tuesday afternoon.

Some 30 players immediately broke from team drills, hopped a fence and ran toward the South Sacramento school's parking lot to offer assistance.

A four-door sedan had accidentally backed over a Laguna Creek student and pinned her underneath. Each player from Valley's junior varsity and varsity team lifted the sedan, allowing coaches Troy Quirillo and Brett Sawyer to pull the girl free.

May 9, 2013
Van Dyke, Lealao nominated for Army All-American Bowl

Cosumnes Oaks wide receiver Alex Van Dyke and Capital Christian defensive lineman Nifae Lealao have been nominated to play in the 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl Jan. 4 at the Alamodome in San Antionio, Texas.

The bowl game features some of the nation's top high school players.

Van Dyke and Lealao are receiving recruiting interest and scholarship offers from across the country.

May 8, 2013
Sac-Joaquin Section D-I North baseball bracket set; no easy outs now

The Sac-Joaquin Section Division I baseball playoff brackets are set, and no matter how you size it up, this shapes up to be a monstrous playoff rumble.

In a word, the North collection is stacked. The regular D-I crowd of recent seasons is now joined by the heavies of the Sierra Foothill League with Woodcreek, Granite Bay and Rocklin.

"Before, there were eight really good teams and now there are 12," Davis coach Dan Ariola said. "There are a lot of good teams with a lot of good aces."

Pleasant Grove coach Rob Rinaldi agreed, saying, "Draw a name out of hat, they're all good."

The league title races came down to the final day of the regular season. Oak Ridge beat Ponderosa 8-4 and Pleasant Grove downed Jesuit 10-4, creating a tie for the Delta River League championship. Because Oak Ridge beat Pleasant Grove two of three times, the Trojans earn the No. 1 seed and Pleasant Grove No. 2. Jesuit, having lost two of three to Oak Ridge this week, is No. 3.

Oak Ridge coach Todd Melton said he was "excited" for his group, one anchored by pitchers Austin Root and Tommy Hummer and shortstop Alec de Watteville, who had four hits against Ponderosa.

Rinaldi was positively ecstatic after his team defended its title. Josh Adams smacked two solo home runs, Matt Stafford improved to 7-1 and Bronson Grubbs had a two-run single.

"I'm thrilled for these guys," said a beaming Rinaldi, his father Ron with him. "These guys work every day. It's been a fun group, a great group."

Davis beat Elk Grove 3-2 on Tuesday to win the Delta Valley Conference as Matt Trask produced a walk-off hit. He did the same last month against the Herd in a 2-1 victory.

Woodcreek clinched the Sierra Foothill League championship with a 10-4 victory over Nevada Union, along with Rocklin downing Granite Bay 2-1. Granite Bay placed second and Rocklin third.

How good is this collection? Consider that Elk Grove, Davis, Jesuit, Oak Ridge, Granite Bay, Pleasant Grove, Rocklin and Woodcreek have at one time or another been in The Bee's Top 6 this season, and some have been there all season. Elk Grove, Davis and Granite Bay have occupied the No. 1 spot with Oak Ridge and Jesuit getting as high as No. 2.

Each of these clubs has faced brutal nonleague schedules, and then league play was just as fierce.

As league champions, Davis, Woodcreek, Oak Ridge and Vacaville earned first-round byes and open postseason play on Wednesday or Thursday at Sacramento City College. Those teams will scout openers on Monday.

Here's the schedule for home openers on Monday, with 4 p.m. starts:

* Vintage at Elk Grove
The Crushers of the Monticello Empire League face the Thundering Herd crushers in Dom Nunez, Rowdy Tellez and Derek Hill.
* Franklin at Rodriguez
The defending D-I North champion Wildcats placed third in the Delta Valley Conference behind Davis and Elk Grove and open in Fairfield.
* Rocklin at Pleasant Grove
The Thunder have two aces in Austin Dick and Logan Webb and the Eagles feature Josh Adams, an ace who also has home run power.
* Jesuit at Granite Bay
Jesuit has aces Julian Barron and Chris Loeb and the Grizzlies have Gabe Meza, who is headed to Sacramento State. Meza has a no-hitter this season.

Woodcreek plays the winner of the Vintage-Elk Grove game on Wednesday and Oak Ridge will take on winner of the Franklin-Rodriguez victor.

On Thursday, Davis will draw the winner of the Jesuit-Granite Bay winner and Vacaville will play the winner of Rocklin-Pleasant Grove.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- On Podcast:

May 8, 2013
CBS' Snyder fans 16, tosses no-hitter against Bella Vista; No. 1 Rocklin, No. 5 Elk Grove lock up outright league championships

Christian Brothers' junior Haley Snyder struck out 16 and tossed a no-hitter in leading the Falcons to a 2-0 win over Bella Vista in the Capital Valley Conference softball finale today in Fair Oaks.

Snyder walked the first batter, then retired the next 21 to run her season record to 15-6 with an 0.52 ERA for No. 8 CBS (17-9, 8-2).

She finishes the regular season with 251 strikeouts in 141 innings.

In other games today:

• Top-ranked Rocklin (23-3, 13-2) broke open a close game with six runs in the sixth inning to beat Granite Bay 9-2 and lock up the outright Sierra Foothill League title. Sam Moffat went four-for-four with a double and two RBIs and Kendall Chambers tossed a four hitter.

• Delany DeMello and Kayla Fields combined for a four-hitter and Mackensie Priley had a double, single and two RBIs as No. 3 Roseville (19-7-1, 11-4) defeated No. 12 Del Oro 4-0 in Roseville.

• Amber Wright, Erikka Burke, Kim Wilburn and Victoria Saborio each had two hits as No. 5 Elk Grove (20-6, 9-1) defeated No. 15 Davis 11-1 in five innings to win the outright Delta Valley Conference title. Ashley Dufresne, Tarah Kalinen and Stephanie Cello each had two hits for Davis (16-9-1, 8-2).

May 8, 2013
Center softball pitcher is hard-luck loser; St. Francis blasts its way into the playoffs and Cordova earns CAL co-championship

Center's Haileigh Arthur-Tardiff suffered a tough loss in Tuesday's Pioneer Valley League softball finale against Bear River in Lake of the Pines.

Arthur-Tardiff struck out 16 Bruins and allowed only three hits. But that last hit - a two-run, walk-off homer by Rachel Last - gave Bear River a 2-0 win in eight innings.

Nerissa Long struck out 13 batters, walked two and allowed five hits for Bear River (12-9, 9-1), the league champions. Cassidy Martin had two hits for Center (5-12, 2-8).

In other Tuesday highlights:

• Bella Stolo went 2 for 2 with a home run and five RBIs and Amy Marks drove in three runs and pitched a two-hitter to lead No. 13 St. Francis (16-8, 6-4) past No. 9 Oak Ridge 15-0 in five innings and secure a Delta River League playoff berth. The loss eliminated Oak Ridge (18-9, 5-5) from the postseason.

• Tiana Brown's game-winning RBI hit led No. 17 Cordova (15-6, 8-2) past No. 20 Antelope 4-3 to earn a share of the Capital Athletic League title with the Titans (14-13, 8-2).

May 8, 2013
Granite Bay rugby to play for state high school club title

Granite Bay defeated the Burbank Islanders 50-32 on Sunday at the Cherry Island Soccer Complex in Elverta to win the Northern California Youth Rugby Association Northern California boys varsity club championship.

The win advances Granite Bay to the state finals May 25 at Treasure Island against a Southern California champion still to be determined.

Granite Bay, which features players from Granite Bay, Del Campo, Casa Roble and Oakmont high schools, opened the NorCal playoffs with a 36-14 win over then No. 11 nationally ranked Golden Gate of San Francisco. Granite Bay followed with a 46-29 win over Hayward, a match that featured nine lead changes.

First-year coach Chris Miller was impressed with his team's depth. The Grizzlies won despite five starters being sidelined by injuries.

The team includes a number of players from Granite Bay's State Bowl championship football team, including backfield standouts Taft Partridge and Johnny Cooley.

Miller said Cooley played the last 12 minutes of the semifinals with a broken collarbone. He had surgery today and will be unable to play in the state finals.

Miller, a former Jesuit and Cal rugby player, says 17 of his players will move on to compete in college rugby next year, including Justin Ramirez, another Granite Bay football standout, for national power Cal.

By winning the NorCal title, Granite Bay climbed to No. 19 in the most recent High School Club Top 25.

Granite Bay's JV team also advanced to the state finals. In a battle of unbeatens, Granite Bay defeated Danville 17-14 in the NorCal finale.

May 4, 2013
Kennedy's Johnson among four area all-state girls selectees

Four area girls, led by Kennedy's Lynette Johnson, made Cal-Hi Sports All-State girls basketball teams.

Johnson, The Bee Girls Player of the Year headed to Utah State, made State Third Team Elite and Division I first team.

Sacramento's Allie Green made All-State D-II first team.

Oak Ridge's Ali Bettencourt made third team All-State Junior Class and second team D-I.

Christian Brothers' Kira McKechnie made the All-State Sophomore second team.

Sacramento High's Michele Massari was the D-II Girls Coach of the Year.

For the complete team go HERE

May 4, 2013
Tavenner burst highlights Jesuit NorCal rugby win over Dixon

Zac Tavenner intercepted a lateral and went nearly the length of the field to score a five-point try and highlight Jesuit's 56-24 win over Dixon Saturday in the Northern California Single School boys rugby championship at the Cherry Island Soccer Complex in Elverta.

The win qualifies Jesuit for the state finals May 25 at Treasure Island.

Jesuit and Dixon, the 2011 and 2012 national high school champions, respectively, also will compete in the Boys High School National Invitational Championship May 16-18 in Elkhart, Ind.

May 3, 2013
Snyder pitches, hits CBS to 9-0 win over No. 1 Casa Roble

In another indication that the upcoming Sac-Joaquin Section softball playoffs are going to be a wide-open affair, No. 11 Christian Brothers walloped top-ranked Casa Roble 9-0 in the Capital Valley Conference game today in Orangevale.

Falcons' junior pitcher Haley Snyder scattered four hits and had two hits and three RBIs, including a two-run homer well over the center field fence. CBS had 10 hits.

The win also kept alive the Falcons' hopes of tying Casa Roble for the CVC title.
Christian Brothers (16-9, 7-2) plays Wednesday at Bella Vista; Casa Roble (19-5, 8-1) travels to Oakmont.

Casa Roble moved atop the rankings this week after previous No. 1 Woodcreek lost last Friday to Roseville.

May 3, 2013
Section boys golf tournaments set for Monday, Tuesday

The Sac-Joaquin Section boys golf playoffs will be held Monday at various sites.

They are: Division I-North, Wildhorse, Davis; D-I South, Creekside, Modesto; D-II, Rancho Solano, Fairfield; D-III, Darkhorse, Auburn; D-IV, Castle Oaks, Ione; D-V, Stevinson Ranch, Stevinson.

The D-VI playoffs will be held Tuesday at Stevinson Ranch.

Top qualifiers advance to the Masters tournament May 13 at The Reserve at Spanos Park in Stockton.

May 2, 2013
Pleasant Grove, Sheldon boosted by seventh inning rallies

In El Dorado Hills today, No. 7 Pleasant Grove scored twice in the top of the seventh inning to defeat No. 6 Oak Ridge 3-1 and secure at least a tie for the Delta River League softball title.

Meanwhile in East Sacramento, two-time defending Sac-Joaquin Section Division I champion and No. 9 Sheldon (13-11, 6-3) secured a DRL playoff berth by rallying for five runs in the seventh inning to top No. 8 St. Francis 7-5.

Sheldon's Anessa Kaylor had a two-run home run, Sara Fukashima a two-run double and Erika Lane and RBI single.

May 2, 2013
Nevada Union High School football coach Dave Humphers steps down

Ready to explore life with his immediate team and satisfied with the body of work as a coaching legend, Dave Humphers is hanging up the trademark lid.

He has stepped down as the Nevada Union High School football coach, expressing great satisfaction with what the Miners have done in Grass Valley under his tenure and moved by the overwhelming desire to spend time with family.

Under Humphers, the Miners since 1991 won 195 games, reached the postseason 17 playoff teams, claimed 10 league championships, six City Championships and four Sac-Joaquin Section Division I crowns. Humphers earlier served several seasons as defensive coordinator with NU. He learned the tricks of the coaching trade from his Mira Loma mentors Don Brown and Gerry Kundert from the 1970s.

The Miners - Miner Magic - have been one of the storied programs in section history, with Humphers a staple on the sideline with his trademark battered and faded blue fishing hat, a tribute to Kundert, who wore a similar hat during his wing-T express Mira Loma era. Kundert still watches his old pupils play, including Terry Stark at Inderkum.

Humphers and the Miners befuddled teams for years with their wing-T attack with myriad fakes and deception plays. The Miners were experts in maximizing under-sized players who were heavy on desire. Scores of players went on to play in college. And Humphers took great glee in coaching his sons in Gabe and Hank on his last two teams. This is a football family if there ever was one.

Bu the year-round toll of leading a program - fundraising, weight training, off-season, player development - takes a toll on all coaches. They certainly don't do this for the meager stipends they earn.

Last month, Vista del Lago coach Chris Jones stepped down to spend more time with his family after six seasons at the Folsom school. His Eagles were 12-2 last season. He led Oak Ridge to three section D-II titles last decade.

In his letter of resignation to NU, Humphers wrote in part, "The long drive every year, the intense emotion, the highs and lows, have added up. It's time for a change for me, for my family and for NU football....I am the most fortunate man on Earth for the family I love. It is time to focus more on family, to watch my sons play college football, to watch dance performances and girls basketball and to support my wife (Dorene)..."

We will add more after talking to Humphers.

- Joe Davidson
- On Twitter: @SacBee_JoeD
- On Podcast:

May 1, 2013
Sheldon's Allen makes Cal-Hi All-State elite first team

Sheldon High School senior Dakarai Allen was named to Cal-Hi Sports' 35th annual boys all-state elite basketball first team today.

The 6-foot-5 senior, The Bee's Player of the Year and a key contributor since his freshman season, helped the Huskies win an unprecedented four consecutive D-I Sac-Joaquin Section titles.

The San Diego State signee joins McDonald's All-Americans Aaron Gordon of Archbishop Mitty of San Jose, Salesian of Richmond's Jabari Bird, Deer Valley of Antioch's Marcus Lee and St. John Bosco of Bellflower's Issac Hamilton on the elite first team.

May 1, 2013
Bella Vista hikes boys college soccer signings to eight

Add three more Bella Vista boys soccer players who are expected to move on to play in college this fall.

Signing letters of intent were Justin Childs with BYU-Hawaii, Mark Caliguire with Dominican University in San Rafael and Billy Baker with Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass.

That makes eight NCAA signees for coaches Zack and Matt Contreras from last fall's Sac-Joaquin Section Division II championship team.

Seniors Trevor Jackson (Sacramento State), Preston Davis (Sacramento State), Tyler Miguel (UC Riverside), Stefan Sarkovich (Holy Cross) and Galen Herron (Dominican) signed earlier this year.

May 1, 2013
National powers Jesuit, Dixon in NorCal rugby playoffs

The Northern California High School Rugby playoffs will be held Friday through Sunday at the Cherry Island Soccer Complex in Elverta.

Among the 45 boys and girls teams competing in 10 divisions are six-time national champion Jesuit and defending 2012 national champion Dixon. Both have already qualified for the USA Rugby National Invitational Tournament May 16-18 in Elkhart, Ind.

On Friday, Jesuit plays McClatchy at 5 p.m. and Dixon faces Bishop O'Dowd of Oakland at 6:30 p.m. in the Boys Varsity Single School semifinals. The championship is 3 p.m. Saturday.

In Saturday's Boys Varsity Club Division (can draw from up to three schools) semifinals, Granite Bay will play Hayward and the Burbank-based Islanders face Danville in 2 p.m. matchups. The championship is 1:30 p.m. Sunday.

The NorCal divisional winners will advance to the California State Cup May 25-26 at the San Francisco Golden Gate Rugby Club on Treasure Island.

The event is sponsored by the Northern California Youth Rugby Association.

About the Prep blog

Bee staff writers Joe Davidson and Bill Paterson provide news, analysis and insight on the area high school sports scene in their Prep Blog. Have a question to ask them? Send them an email any time at or

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