The inside of Grant High School's gym is a tribute to the Pacers' athletic glory.
Football success dates back decades, punctuated by a CIF State Bowl title in 2008.
And there are reminders of Grant's success in boys basketball: a Sac-Joaquin Section title in 1977 under coach Ron Jones, Capital Athletic League crowns in the 1980s under Steve Williams and Northern California titles in 1996 under Eric Satterwhite and 1999 under Tony Lowden.
"We point to those league championships all the time," longtime Pacers coach Deonard Wilson said. "We've had playoff teams in the recent past, but we haven't won a league title in 14 seasons. We want one."
The Pacers (18-7), ranked 11th by The Bee, are in first place in the competitive Delta Valley Conference (6-2). They have won four DVC games in a row, including 64-53 over four-time defending champion Franklin on Friday.
The Pacers are led by senior captains: guards Malek Mitschem and Malek Wren and forward Brandon Nunn, also a baseball standout. Their top player and one of the section's best is De'Sean Parsons, a 6-foot-6 senior guard (18 points a game).
A holiday tournament provided an example of Parsons' team-first attitude. He was named the MVP but gave the trophy to Nunn, insisting Nunn was just as worthy.
Grant also has overcome the loss of 6-8 junior forward Cameron Oliver (knee injury).
"The kids have worked hard," said Wilson, "and they know we can get better."
The Pacers finish conference play this week with home games against Laguna Creek, which beat Grant 67-66 on Jan. 18 when a buzzer beater just missed, and Elk Grove.
Pope's down Malik Pope, Laguna Creek's versatile 6-8 junior forward, is out for at least six weeks following a spill Friday at nearby Harriet Eddy Middle School.
Pope and his teammates were at the school for a pep rally when he slipped during a layup drill and broke his leg.
Laguna Creek is tied with Franklin and Davis for second place in the DVC.
Powder burns Woodcreek's spirited "Black Mob" rooting section took up nearly three quarters of the Timberwolves' gym Friday for a rivalry game against Roseville.
One student planned to toss baby powder into the air before tipoff, à la LeBron James, but a swarm of students also got into the act, and the air was clogged with white particles. It took more than 30 minutes to sweep the floor before the tip, and players slipping led to play being halted three times.
In the second quarter, coaches, school officials and referees agreed to move the game to Roseville, which won the Sierra Foothill League showdown 87-71.
Cole Jacobs scored 25 points and Romany Tyukayev 19, and Matt Tawlks had 11 assists to pull the surging Tigers into a three-way tie for second place in the SFL at 4-3, a game behind Granite Bay.
Earlier in the week, Roseville beat Granite Bay 99-91.
Lockdown game Center (6-16) upset Placer 51-46 on Wednesday for its first Pioneer Valley League win, especially impressive considering the game was played with Center in lockdown.
According to Twin Rivers Police, a parolee with an arrest warrant was spotted on campus. The game continued uninterrupted, but fans were not allowed to exit the gym without a police escort.