The momentum continues in Sutter County for a small-school team that plays big.
East Nicolaus, the 2015 CIF State Division VI-AA champion, is 5-0. The Spartans, with an enrollment of 320, have beaten Fall River 36-7, Colusa 53-28, Ripon Christian 46-7, Pierce 47-0 and Live Oak 58-20. They have a bye this week and open Mid-Valley League play Oct. 7.
East Nicolaus, of the Northern Section, has won 16 consecutive games under coach Travis Barker, an alumnus who fondly refers to his school as “home forever.” The Spartans are averaging 373.6 rushing yards and have run for 27 touchdowns. Steven Brown has passed for 629 yards and six touchdowns and rushed for 494 yards and six scores. Nolan Goyet has rushed for 539 yards and 11 touchdowns.
175 All-purpose yards by Pleasant Grove’s Dawson Weber in a loss to Jesuit on Friday
Elk Grove drops – After being upset 16-14 at unranked Davis on Friday, Elk Grove slipped four spots to No. 6 in The Sacramento Bee’s Top 20. Elk Grove hosts No. 2 Grant on Friday. Davis will enter the rankings if it pulls off another shocker. The Blue Devils host No. 7 Jesuit on Friday.
Cal-Hi Sports’ Sac-Joaquin Section rankings were not nearly as kind, dropping the Thundering Herd from No. 3 to No. 24. Those section rankings have Del Oro first, Grant second, St. Mary’s of Stockton third, Rocklin fourth, Sacramento fifth, Folsom sixth and Jesuit seventh.
Pioneer coach bows out – Scott Stephens stepped down as Pioneer’s coach last week in what was deemed a mutual decision with school administration after a 2-0 start turned into a 2-2 season with two blowout losses.
After beating Natomas 29-18 and Fairfield 26-14, the Patriots fell to El Camino 70-14 and Rio Americano 58-0. Stephens has coached in the Woodland Joint Unified School District for 18 years at various levels. He went 8-16 at Pioneer, where his daughters, Abbey and Kylie, play volleyball.
Freshman coach Richard Church replaced Stephens, and in his first game, the Patriots lost 51-0 to Inderkum on Friday. Stephens is the second area coach to resign this season. Jason Rossow stepped down at Pleasant Grove on Sept. 12 to focus on his health and hopes to return next season.
373.6 East Nicolaus’ rushing average in its 5-0 start
Pleasant Grove impact – Pleasant Grove is 0-4, but it’s not for lack of effort by Dawson Weber.
The senior wide receiver/defensive back was stellar Friday, accumulating 175 all-purpose yards in a 35-20 loss to Jesuit. Weber caught two touchdown passes, including an 80-yarder, from Sam Whiting.. Weber also had two interceptions, giving him five this season, tied with Gilberto Macias of Willows for the most in Northern California
Foothill honors – Foothill inducted its latest Hall of Fame class Friday. The honorees:
▪ John Hoaglund, the boys basketball coach from 1969 to 1983. His teams went 46-3 during the 1978-79 and ’79-80 seasons with a 35-game winning streak. They became known as “Hoaglund’s Heroes” and were serenaded by the school band playing the theme from the TV show “Hogan’s Heroes.” His top players included Richard May, David Webber and Phil Wiechec.
▪ The 1994 CIF State Division III championship boys basketball team, coached by Drew Hibbs, who still guides the Mustangs. Foothill went 30-5, was led by Bee All-Metro forward Rick Gonzales and snapped the 28-game winning streak of Pacifica of Garden Grove in the final, winning 81-61 at the Oakland Coliseum Arena.
▪ Track star T’Keyah Birkley, who won two section titles in the hurdles.
▪ Campus and community leaders Carol Clark and Charlie Sherman. Clark, a public safety officer for 14 years, died of cancer this summer. Sherman led a grass-roots effort to get a football stadium built on campus. Foothill played home games at Highlands Bowl from 1965 to 2003.
The Bee’s Top 20
With last week’s ranking:
1. Del Oro (1) 5-0
2. Grant (3) 4-0
3. Rocklin (4) 4-1
4. Sacramento (5) 3-1
5. Folsom (6) 4-1
6. Elk Grove (2) 3-1
7. Jesuit (7) 3-1
8. Antelope (8) 4-0
9. Oak Ridge (11) 3-1
10. Whitney (12) 3-1
11. Roseville (13) 4-0
12. Sheldon (14) 4-0
13. Monterey Trail (10) 3-1
14. Franklin (9) 3-1
15. Del Campo (15) 2-2
16. Vista del Lago (16) 3-2
17. Inderkum (18) 2-2
18. Cosumnes Oaks (19) 3-1
19. Liberty Ranch (–) 4-1
20. Bear River (–) 2-2
Dropped out: Granite Bay, El Dorado
Kickoffs between 7-7:30 p.m.
No. 1 Del Oro at Nevada Union
No. 2 Grant at No. 6 Elk Grove
No. 4 Sacramento vs. Florin at Monterey Trail
Granite Bay at No. 5 Folsom
No. 7 Jesuit at Davis
Woodcreek at No. 9 Oak Ridge
No. 8 Antelope at Oakmont
No. 15 Del Campo at No. 10 Whitney
No. 18 Cosumnes Oaks at No. 11 Roseville
No. 14 Franklin vs. No. 12 Sheldon at Cosumnes Oaks
Pleasant Grove vs. No. 13 Monterey Trail at Sheldon
No. 17 Inderkum at Yuba City
No. 20 Bear River at Sutter
Byes: No. 3 Rocklin, No. 16 Vista del Lago, No. 19 Liberty Ranch
Bella Vista at Ponderosa
Christian Brothers at Stagg-Stockton
Delta at Woodland Christian
Dixon vs. Mesa Verde at San Juan
Encina at Bradshaw Christian
Highlands vs. Rio Americano at Del Campo
Johnson vs. McClatchy at Hughes Stadium
Kennedy vs. Valley at Cosumnes River College
Lindhurst at Marysville
Laguna Creek at Burbank
Pioneer at River City
Quincy at Foresthill
Rosemont at Franklin-Stockton
Rio Linda at River Valley
San Juan at Golden Sierra
Union Mine at University Prep-Redding
Winters at Bret Harte
Capital Christian vs. West Campus at Burbank, 6 p.m.