April 28, 2009
Carmichael school holds area's top baseball winning percentage

Tiny Victory Christian of Carmichael has the area's best winning percentage this season.

The unranked Vikings are 15-1-1 overall and lead the Central Valley Christian League with an 8-0-1 mark after beating Delta of Clarksburg 31-9 on Monday.

The Vikings' biggest win was 15-5 over No. 19 Placer, the Pioneer Valley League leader, in a nonleague game March 21. The Vikings' only loss was 10-5 to Berean Christian of Walnut Creek April 16 in the Vacaville Christian Tournament.

Victory Christian has three of the CVCL's batting leaders, according to Maxpreps.com, in senior Michael Flores (.510) and juniors Nathan Coppernall (.509) and Johnny Coburn (.490) while 6-2, 210-pound senior catcher Joey Kurtz is batting .438 with 22 RBI.

Senior pitcher Ryan Busch is 6-1 and freshman Clayton Coppernoll is 4-0.

April 24, 2009
Laguna Creek stuns top-ranked Elk Grove in Delta Valley baseball

It wasn't something top-ranked Elk Grove anticipated on the eve of its Delta Valley Conference baseball showdown with No. 4 Davis.

The Thundering Herd lost 14-8 to Laguna Creek Thursday to drop into a three-way tie for first with Davis and Franklin. All have 7-2 records.

Laguna Creek was 1-7 in league entering the contest but had 13 hits and took advantage of six Elk Grove errors to produce the upset.

Erik Nicholson and Chase Underwood each had three hits for Laguna Creek.

Justin Charles had three doubles; Jake Rodriguez a home run, two singles and four runs batted in and Johnny Barkley three singles for Elk Grove.

The Thundering Herd will play host to Davis Monday at 4:15 p.m., then travels the next day to Davis.

Elk Grove plays a nonleague game Saturday against Santa Cruz at Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton.

April 23, 2009
Cameron and Sean Nill - perfect night of performance

Tonight was a double treat of entertainment, and no one was wearing shoulder pads, cleats or head gear of any sort.

But talk about talent.

I hustled over to Laguna Creek High School to catch my soon-to-be 11-year old son Cameron work his magic on the clarinet. His Foulks Ranch Elementary School band merged with others in the Elk Grove Unified School District, including the host school, on a number of tunes in the 14th Annual Arts Night.

I also caught Sean Nill in his real element. And to really appreciate the man is to see him perform.

Football followers know Nill as one of the most ferocious defensive players to suit up in this region - ever. He was a three-year standout defensive tackle for Laguna Creek, but his real skill and passion is with the arts. Drama, singing - gifts that make blocking and tackling look relatively easy. The two-time Bee All-Metro performer will attend Sacramento State next fall and study drama. His quarterback pursuits are over. Football's loss is theatre's gain.

Under the direction of Robert Souliere, Nill and his Laguna Creek vocal ensemble performed a rousing edition of "Sweet Caroline" that would have made Neil Diamond stand and salute. They had the crowd and young musical students on the other side of the gym clapping in rhythm (the ensemble later joined Donner Elementary to do "Tomorrow Needs Us).

When it was over, Cameron's eyes lit up when I introduced him to Nill. Cameron had seen Nill play football, and he read about him. And he seemed refreshed to see that a guy who could get so blissfully bloody and bruised in football could help make such a pretty sound in choir. Nill, all class, eagerly shook Cameron's hand.

When informed that Cameron is dabbling in a theatre class and is preparing for a Foulks Ranch school play later this month, Nill applauded the move and said, "That's awesome. Drama is such a blast. Stick with it. I want to come see your show. I'll be there."

Cameron's reaction? Cool. My reaction? Way cool.

April 23, 2009
Scott, Blocker, Mitchell are area double section track leaders

Oak Ridge's Hayley Scott, Del Campo's Dan Mitchell and Jesuit's Tom Blocker are area double leaders in the the latest Sac-Joaquin Section boys and girls track and field rankings released today by Dyestatcal.com.

Boys leaders
100 - Tom Blocker, Jesuit, 10.86
200 - Anthony Riggins, Rodriguez, 21.89
400 - Tom Blocker, Jesuit, 48.68
800 - Robert Campagnone, Casa Roble, 1:56.85
1600 - Dan Mitchell, Del Campo, 4:15.60
3200 - Dan Mitchell, Del Campo, 9:09.68
110 hurdles - Dante Thomas, Fairfield, 14.30
300 hurles - Dante Thomas, Fairfield, 37.81
High jump - Will Findlay, Oak Ridge 6-6
Long jump - Justin Sutter, Granite Bay, 24-4
Triple jump - Chris Mamon, Benicia, 44-11.50
Pole vault - Rob Simmons, Rocklin, 16-3
Discus - James Kinloch, Granite Bay, 164-0
Shot put - Jeremy Hines, Jesuit, 53-8
4x100 relay - Laguna Creek, 41.74
4x400 relay - Rodriguez 3:22.89

Girls leaders
100 - Monikkia White, Vallejo, 12.00
200 - Brittany Adams, Inderkum, 25.13
400 - Cierra Jordan, St. Mary's, 55.84
800- Hayley Scott, Oak Ridge, 2:16.27
1600 - Hayley Scott, Oak Ridge, 4:59.53
3200 - Sara Tusting, Benicia, 10:56.55
100 hurdles - Trinity Wilson, St. Mary's, 14.12
300 hurdles - Kayla Carter, Lodi, 44.38
High jump - Samantha Balentine, Lodi, 5-6
Long jump - Tatum Souza, Napa, 18-1.75
Triple jump - Rio Schwalbach, Buchach Colony, 36-6.50
Pole vault - MacKenzie Landry, Del Oro, 13-1
Discus - Lindsay Machado, El Dorado, 135-2
Shot put - Jackie Ahloo, St. Mary's, 44-10
4x100 relay - Fairfield, 48.15
4x400 relay - Fairfield, 3:51.67

April 23, 2009
Del Oro's Landry No. 2 in the world in Youth pole vault rankings

Del Oro sophomore MacKenzie Landry is not only the Sac-Joaquin Section leader and tied for the state lead in the girls pole vault at 13 feet, 1 inch, she also is No. 2 in the world for girls born in 1992 or 1993, according to Dyestat.com.

Landry's mark, set at the Arcadia Invitational April 10, is second only at the IAAF World Youth level to Morgann LeLeux of Catholic High School of New Iberia, La, who vaulted 13-2.50. The sophomore established the mark indoors at the LSU Invitational Jan. 9 in Baton Rouge. LeLeux's best outdoor mark this season is 13-0.

Landry's 13-1 outdoors performance puts her second nationally to Allen, Texas, senior Rachel Fisher's 13-3.

Landry's mark puts her in position to qualify for the U.S. Team that will compete in the IAAF World Youth Championships July 8-12 in Bressanone, Italy.

April 23, 2009
Rocklin's Cale Simmons climbs above 16 feet in the pole vault

It didn't take Cale Simmons long to close a little ground on his twin brother Rob in their family friendly duel for the Sac-Joaquin Section's best boys pole vault mark.

The Rocklin senior went 16 feet, one-quarter-inch Wednesday night at the Rocklin-Oakmont dual meet. Cale's previous best of 15-9 came on Friday at the Woody Wilson Classic.

That meet is also where Rob vaulted a personal best 16-3, which puts him No. 2 in the state and No. 7 nationally. Michael Woepse of Mater Dei of Santa Ana is the state leader at 16-9 and fourth nationally.

Cale's vault now puts him behind his brother at No. 2 in the section and No. 3 in the state. Placer's Derrick Hinch, who had a 15-10 vault at the Weekly Duals March 22, is third in the section and fourth in the state.

The national leader, according to Dyestat.com, the comprehensive high school track and field Web site, is Jack Whitt of Norman North, Okla., who vaulted 18-0 1/4 at the Texas Relays April 4.

April 22, 2009
Elk Grove has game lead over Franklin, Davis in DVC baseball

With a 6-3 win over No. 5 Franklin on Monday, top-ranked Elk Grove is now alone at the top of the Delta Valley Conference baseball standings at 7-1.

Franklin and No. 4 Davis are tied for second at 6-2.

On the horizon: Davis is at Elk Grove Monday, then hosts the Thundering Herd Tuesday. The Blue Devils play Franklin April 30 and May 5.

Only two DVC teams will advance to the postseason this year.

April 20, 2009
Cordova's Anderson a coach for the ages

Guy Anderson is one of those coaching marvels you have to really see to appreciate. He's the ageless wonder, still as passionate about his craft today as he was when he wore the horned-rim glasses and sported the flat-top upon his Cordova High School arrival in 1963.

"The school was so new," Anderson recalled last week, "that dust blew everywhere. No grass yet."

Anderson has won more than 834 baseball games in 40 amazing seasons at Cordova. His teams led the state in victories in the 1970s with 227. The Lancers led the state with wins from 1980 to 1999 with 458, and they own the state standard for victories from 1970 to 1999 with 690. They wheeled out major league talent, big-time college prospects and some of the most dominating and entertaining teams in regional history, all anchored by the ultimate coach in Coach Guy.

The Lancers won five Sac-Joaquin Section titles, four during the feel-good 1980s. All told, Cordova has produced 17 league championships 25 playoff teams, 39 winning seasons and 12 major league players.

Some of his major league talent included two first-round picks in the 1972 draft, then a major league first with Mike Ondina and Jerry Manuel, now the Mets manager. Other major league players who got their start under Anderson included Chris Bosio, who threw a no-hitter for the Seattle Mariners, Max Venable (now an assistant coach with Triple-A Portland and Geoff Jenkins, who had some mashing seasons for the Milwaukee Brewers. And what was Anderson's impact to those players? They are all still close to the old coach.

While it's true that the Lancers of this decade do not resemble the Lancers of lore - thanks in large part to the changing demographics of Rancho Cordova and the school - the fact that they still compete and still win is testament to Anderson. The coach suffered through one losing season, last season, and his charges started 11-3 this season. Anderson credits longtime assistant coach Chad Parker for his input and loyalty, too.

"He's had every reason to step down, having accomplished everything a coach can accomplish, but he keeps coming back," said Elk Grove coach Jeff Carlson, who played infield against Anderson with those talented Christian Brothers teams of the mid 1980s. "He's amazing to me."

Anderson said he'll continue to coach as long as he can swing a fungo bat in pre-game warm-ups, popping grounders to warm up his infielders and outfields.

"My aluminum bat helps with the pop," Anderson cracked.

April 20, 2009
NorCalPreps.com names Sara James NorCal D-II Player of the Year

Sara James, who averaged 20.9 points and 10.6 rebounds in leading Oak Ridge to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II championship and a CIF NorCal D-II runner-up finish, has been named NorCalPreps.com's D-II Girls Basketball Player of the Year.

The 5-foot-11 junior snagged the honor over McDonald's All-American and state scoring leader DeNesha Stallworth of Pinole Valley.

James also was named to the All-NorCalPreps.com's first team, joining Stallworth, Chelsea Gray of St. Mary's of Stockton, Monte Vista of Danville's Niveen Rasheed and Sacred Heart Cathedral's Ki-Shawna Moore.

Gray was the NorCal overall and D-III Player of the Year.

Junior guard Brittany Shine of Sacramento High was named to the third team.

April 20, 2009
Rocklin's Lane named boys basketball NorCal Player of the Year

Rocklin High senior Brendan Lane can add another accolade to a marvelous prep basketball career.

The 6-foot-10 Lane, who is headed for UCLA on scholarship, was selected as NorCalPreps.com's Northern California Boys Player of the Year.

He also was named NorCalPreps' D-II Boys Player of the Year.

Senior guard Chase Tapley of Sacramento High was selected the D-III Boys Player of the Year.

Tapley joined Lane, Monte Vista's Brian Barbour, McClymonds' Will Cherry and Salesian's Desmond Simmons on the first team.

Folsom's Tony Johnson and Pleasant Grove's Xavier Thames made the third team.

April 17, 2009
Rob Simmons vaults to meet record 16-3 at Woody Wilson Classic

Rocklin's Rob Simmons continues to make impressive progress with another outstanding performance in the boys pole vault tonight at the Woody Wilson Classic track and field meet at UC Davis.

Simmons, a senior, won the event in a meet record 16 feet, 3 inches to better his personal best of 16-1 set March 27 at the Stanford Invitational.

Simmons, who missed in three attempts at 16-7, remains second in the state behind Mater Dei of Santa Ana junior Michael Woepse, who has cleared 16-9.

Simmons' new standard ranks him ninth nationally. He broke the previous Wilson Classic record of 16-0 set last year by Roseville's Blair Wallingford.

Rob Simmons' twin, Cale, also set a personal best in clearing 15-9 and finishing third behind Reno's Jordan Parker (15-9). Cale Simmons' previous best was 15-8. The keeps him fourth in the state behind Woepse, Rob Simmons and Placer's Derrick Hinch, who has a best of 15-10.

Rob Simmons wasn't the only impressive effort at the prestigious meet.

Novato junior Erik Olson won the boys 3200-meter run in 8:57.51, the fastest outdoor time in the nation this year. He shattered the Wilson meet record of 9:19.14 set last year by James Tracy of Del Campo.

Among other area athletes to win in the later stages of tonight's meet were Oak Ridge's Hayley Scott in the girls 800 (2 minutes, 16.27 seconds), Galt's Jason Coupe in the boys 800 (1:56.99); Jesuit's Tom Blocker in the boys 400 (49.21); Foothill's T'keyah Birkley in the girls 300 hurdles (44.65); Oak Ridge's Sarah Vaughn in the girls high jump (5-5) and Jesuit's RJ. Frasier in the boys 300 hurdles (39.00).

The meet started with a bang as seven new meet records were established in the first 13 running events.

Among the area runners to set new records were the Jesuit boys in the 4x100 relay (42.12 seconds); Davis in the boys 4x400 relay (8:00.4); and Woodland in the boys distance medley (10:45.29).

Area individuals to win earlier in the evening were Del Campo's Dan Mitchell in the boys 1600 meters (4:15.60), Granite Bay's Brooke Holt in the girls 1600 meters (5:05.65); state leader Justin Sutter of Granite Bay in the boys long jump (22 feet, 10 inches) and Kayla Kamaka of Woodcreek in the girls pole vault (11-6).

The Woody Wilson Classic began 74 years ago and was resurrected in 1992. It is the first of the area's major high school meets in bringing together many of the top athletes from the Sac-Joaquin Section and the Bay Area.

The meet is part of the annual UC Davis Picnic Day celebration.

The high school meet started in 1935 as the Cal Aggie Picnic Day Meet by track coach Woody Wilson. When he died in 1959, it was renamed in his honor before the prep portion was discontinued in 1966, and then revived 26 years later.


April 17, 2009
Meet records are falling at Woody Wilson Classic at UC Davis

The weather is warm and clear but the meet records are falling like rain at tonight's Woody Wilson Classic at UC Davis.

The prestigious high school track and field meet, which started 74 years ago and was resurrected in 1992, saw seven new meet records established in the first 13 running events.

Among the area runners to establish new records were the Jesuit boys in the 4x100 relay (42.12 seconds); Davis in the boys 4x800 relay (8:00.40); and Woodland in the boys distance medley (10:45.29).

Among the area individuals to win events so far are Del Campo's Dan Mitchell in the boys 1600 meters (4:15.60), Granite Bay's Brooke Holt in the girls 1600 meters (5:05.65); state leader Justin Sutter of Granite Bay in the boys long jump (22 feet, 10 inches) and Kayla Kamaka of Woodcreek in the girls pole vault (11-6).

The boys pole vault is underway and features Rocklin twins Rob and Cale Simmons, who have two of the top marks in the state this season. Rob Simmons has a best of 16-1; Cale of 15-8.

April 16, 2009
Youth movement powering Del Oro

John Peck must be one heck of a poker player.

The Del Oro softball coach is holding a royal flush in terms of young talent but nary a tell is visible.

Soft spoken and calm in assessing his team after a 10-0 five-inning romp over Granite Bay he could have been t

The Golden Eagles (14-6, 4-2 Sierra Foothill League) sit in a three-way tie for second place in the SFL with Rocklin (10-9. 4-2) and Woodcreek (11-9, 4-2), just one game behind Roseville (12-4, 5-1) and they're doing it with youth.

Del Oro's top four hitters -- Whitney Smith (.412 batting average), Ciera Clark (.333), Hannah George (.320) and Aspen Echelmier (.286) -- are underclassmen and coupled with junior stud Savannah Pingree (1.10 ERA) in the circle the future is very bright.

George, a freshman, is the Golden Eagles' leadoff hitter and on Wednesday against Granite Bay showed just why Peck has entrusted that responsibility to a youngster. Leading off the game George singled to right field, stole second and two batters later was plated by a triple from Smith. George and Smith both went 3-for-4 on the day.

"To be a freshman on varsity you have to play," Peck said. "It takes committed players who play above their age."

A third freshman, Jordan Courage, plays in right field for Peck and serves as the No. 2 pitcher behind Pingree, but has pitched sparingly as Pingree has gobbled up opposing batters and eats up innings.

"She's the real thing," said Peck of Pingree.

Del Oro is looking to get back to the playoffs after a fourth-place finish in the SFL last year. The SFL has three spots in the Division II Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs and four teams vying for them.

April 16, 2009
Stanislaus State has pipeline to area girls high school soccer talent

One college program that has consistently mined area girls soccer talent through the years has been Stanislaus State.

So it was no surprise that four area seniors plan to play in Turlock next season.

The Stanislaus State coach is Gabriel Bolton, who is very familiar with the area.

He coached at Bella Vista and Sierra College and also was the director of coaching for Sacramento's River City United Soccer Club in 2005 and 2006.

So it's no surprise that three of his recruits formerly played for him with River City.

Forwards Brianna Scales of Ponderosa and Elle Porter of Bella Vista both played for Bolton on his Boca Juniors '90 team that won the 2006 U.S. Club National Championship.
Defender Sierra Casas of Del Campo played on Bolton's Boca Jrs. '91 team. Bolton also will be bringing in senior defender Shelby Cargile of Del Oro next fall.

"The talent in the Sacramento area is fantastic," Bolton said. "It's always going to be a hotbed for us."

The Warriors, 8-7-4 last season, also have four area players scheduled to return - sophomores Christine Rust, El Camino; Maryanne Sayles, Rio Americano and Heather Overholt, St. Francis and freshman Millie Brown of Elk Grove.

April 15, 2009
Konkel puts on show in helping Franklin girls soccer past Davis

Brynne Konkel is the real deal.

The Franklin High School junior forward, considered by many this area's top high school girls soccer player, put on another remarkable performance today at Davis High School.

In scoring the 69th goal of her high school career, Konkel tallied the game winner on a ball that appeared to explode off her head and rocket into the net from 15 yards out with under a minute to play.

The blast came from a corner kick by Nicole Athey to break a 2-2 tie in an entertaining match-up of Franklin, the area's emerging girls soccer power, and the Blue Devils, the area's established power.

It gave Franklin (13-0-2, 5-0-1) a sweep of its two Delta Valley Conference matches with Davis (13-3-3, 3-2-1), the first wins for the Wildcats over the Blue Devils in school history. Franklin also beat Davis 1-0 March 23 in Elk Grove.

The victory means that Franklin could be a challenger to the stranglehold that St. Francis and Davis have had over the D-I playoff field for more than a decade.

The last area team other than St. Francis or Davis to win a D-I banner was Casa Roble in 1997.

But Konkel could be the difference maker, as she showed against a team like Davis that has quality players at every position.

The Blue Devils did everything they could to try to deny Konkel the ball. Once she touched it, things got dangerous for Davis.

Konkel set up Franklin's first goal in the first half by delivering a marvelous 25-yard cross from the right side that found the feet of Alycia Miller charging from the left.

But Konkel clearly is a load when the ball is in the air because of her strength and hops.

She connected on the game winner, her 26th of the season, even though everyone in the stadium knew she was the target.

"Brynne scores some amazing goals," says Franklin coach Eliseo Lopez. "She's just so great in the air. She's fearless.

"Combine that with her skills, speed and the good vision to get the whole team involved, and we're talking about someone really special."

April 14, 2009
Elk Grove hitters tough on pro pitching prospects in San Diego

Just before playing at Vista High School three years ago in the San Diego Lions Tournament, Elk Grove baseball coach Jeff Carlson knew something was up as he watched dozens of Major League Baseball scouts fill the stands before the start of the game against the host team.

As it turned out, pitching for Vista was Trevor Cahill, now the rookie sensation with the Oakland A's.

But on that day, the Thundering Herd hitters treated Cahill as if he were a Little Leaguer.

They scored eight runs on eight hits in knocking Cahill out by the fifth inning in an eventual 16-7 win.

Fast forward to the same tournament at the same field on April 7 against Mira Mesa of San Diego.

Carlson said more than two-dozen scouts were on hand to watch Mira Mesa's pro pitching prospect Justin Bellez, a San Diego State recruit who throws in the low 90s.

Bellez was gone by the second inning with his team down 9-2.

Justin Charles hit a solo home run in the first and a grand slam in the second to chase Bellez in what turned out to be a wild, entertaining game.

Mira Mesa rallied to take a 12-9 lead, before Charles and Zach Miller each hit two-run homers in bottom of the seventh for a 13-12 win.

Elk Grove went 2-2 in the tournament, including a 3-2, nine-inning loss to Eastlake of Chula Vista in Thursday's semifinals.

April 13, 2009
Top teams may be gone, but Land Park tournament remains viable

Mike DeNecochea admits the Land Park Easter Baseball Tournament isn't what it used to be.

But the director of the annual spring-break event thinks it's still important.

"The kids still enjoy playing in it, and I do this as a tribute to my old coach," DeNecochea said.

That would be McClatchy's Bernie Church, who started the event 32 years ago.

DeNecochea played for Church in the 1984 and 1985 tournaments and has kept it going as the Lions' head man the last five seasons.

"It was really big back then," DeNecochea said. "We'd draw huge crowds."

While it's still a nice fund-raising event for McClatchy's baseball program, some teams find playing in a city-operated park on diamonds with no fences less attractive than digging their cleats into the turf at some of the nicer high school ballparks with the potential for fence-clearing home runs.

In recent years the area's top teams have bypassed the event, either to compete in the Granite Bay Spring Break tournament or in out-of-area tournaments.

No. 1 Elk Grove, No. 2 Jesuit, No. 4 Franklin, No. 5 Davis, No. 6 Sheldon, No. 8 Rocklin and No. 9 Pleasant Grove played out of town either this week or last.

No. 3 Yuba City and No. 10 Granite Bay played in the 18-team Granite Bay tournament last week along with four other teams in The Bee's top 20.

"A lot of teams are bailing on us, but we've got a few that came back this year," DeNecochea said. "This is baseball the old-fashioned way."

Despite rain on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, DeNecochea said most of the 14 teams that participated played all four games. Some settled for three games.

The tournament was scheduled to run Monday through Wednesday but had to be extended to Thursday.

Vintage beat Monticello Empire League rival Vacaville 9-4 for the championship.

A few other highlights:

• Best Game - Vacaville defeated San Juan 1-0 in 10 innings on opening day. Josh Dreier pitched the entire way for the losing Spartans, allowing five hits and striking out 13.

• Unusual feat - Despite no fences at Land Park's Doc Oliver Field, McClatchy's Cody Brown, Andrew Schanz and Devon Poole all hit home runs in a 10-0 win over Florin.

• Biggest surprise - West Campus, a team just 2-7 in the Capital Valley Conference, beat Kennedy 9-5, Galt 4-2 and Laguna Creek 5-4 to finish 3-1 behind all-tournament players Ryan Fernandez and Nolan Ono.

April 13, 2009
Jesuit loses opener in National Classic baseball tournament

Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks used the long ball to beat Jesuit 8-6 in today's opening round of the National Classic baseball tournament in Southern California.

A defending Southern Section champion, Notre Dame (12-2) homered four times, including solo and three-run shots by Kelly Dugan.

The Mauraders (11-2) out-hit the Knights 14 to 9 in a game played at El Dorado High School in Placentia.

Jimmy Bosco led Jesuit with two hits, including a home run, while Frank McDonald had three hits in four at-bats.

Sixteen elite teams are entered in the four-day event, including teams from New York, New Jersey, Florida, Arizona and Utah.

April 13, 2009
Granite Bay's Sutter wins long jump with state best leap at Arcadia meet

Justin Sutter of Granite Bay leaped onto the national track and field stage this weekend with an outstanding performance at the prestigious Arcadia Invitational in Southern California.

The senior won the the long jump with a state best 24 feet, 4 inches. That also put in him fifth nationally and was a huge improvement over his previous best this season of 22-5 March 28 at the Stanford Invitational.

Del Oro's MacKenzie Landry and Placer's Derrick Hinch finished second in the girls and boys pole vaults, respectively.

Landry, a sophomore, and state leader Allison Kornessel of Huntington Beach each vaulted 13-1 but Kornessel won on fewer jumps. Kornessel and Landry rank No. 2 nationally behind the 13-3 of Rachel Fisher of Allen, Texas.

Hinch vaulted 15-7 to finish behind Michael Woepse of Mater Dei of Santa Ana, who won at 16-9. Rob Simmons of Rocklin placed third, also at 15-7.

Tom Blocker of Jesuit placed third in the seeded 400 meter boys race in 48.68.

April 11, 2009
Neither rain nor changing demographics slows down Cordova's Anderson

Cordova baseball coach Guy Anderson, who already has celebrated 76 birthdays, seems tireless, even when putting in the extra work demanded of a rain-delayed spring break baseball tournament.

The 39th annual Cordova Easter Tournament, the area's oldest, was supposed to be over by Thursday after starting on Monday.

But rain got in the way, so the event will continue with two games this afternoon and three more, including the championship, next Saturday.

Today Folsom plays Capital Christian at 12:30 p.m., followed by Cordova against Rio Linda at 3:30 p.m., both at Hagan Park in Rancho Cordova.

Anderson and members of Cordova's volunteer Sports Club helped groom the water-logged fields Friday in preparation for today's games.

"Fortunately we had some good weather in the afternoon," Anderson said. "So we were able to get out there and sweep the water off the home plate area and clean up the bullpens."

Win or lose today, Cordova is guaranteed a spot in next Saturday's 3:30 p.m. championship game. They will be seeking their 14th Cordova tournament championship.

Which only seems appropriate.

Anderson, who will be inducted in the National High School Hall of Fame in Chicago this summer, has been the heart and soul of the Lancers program through 40 seasons.

He entered the season with 822 victories, ranking him second in California and fifth all-time nationally. He has won 15 league championships and four Sac-Joaquin Section titles and guided 23 playoff teams.

But changing demographics, shrinking enrollment and a thinning talent pool have made wins harder to come by in recent years.

There was nothing leaner than 2008. The Lancers went 6-21 and 1-14 in in the Sierra Valley Conference.

This year's Cordova bunch, currently ranked No. 11 by The Bee, has rebounded nicely with a 10-3 overall record and 3-3 mark in league.

"We're quite pleased," Anderson said. "This was the same group that took its lumps last season as juniors. We've had five walk-off victories and played only one poor game, and that was against Ponderosa (the defending D-II section champions)."

One of the team leaders and top hitters is senior shortstop Scott Callen, Anderson's grandson.

And Anderson, who used to crank out future college stars and major leaguers with regularity, still gets excited by a prospect.

The latest is 6-foot-2, 200-pound junior catcher Mike Wallace.

"He's already hit four home runs," Anderson said. "He's a good-looking young man."

April 10, 2009
Coach is OK with top-ranked Elk Grove's 2-2 finish in San Diego

Make no mistake about it, Elk Grove baseball coach Jeff Carlson would have preferred a sweep at the San Diego Lions tournament this past week.

But he wasn't that disappointed with the Thundering Herd's 2-2 finish, even if it likely will drop them in The Bee's area (currently No. 1) and Cal-Hi Sports' state (No. 5) rankings.

"You'd love to win for the national recognition," Carlson said. "But sometimes things don't happen that way. The key is that we have to take care of business in league."

Still, it was a nice rebound from the previous year in which Elk Grove lost all four games in the prestigious spring-break event.

"Our kids played hard and really competed," Carlson said. "We felt those who beat us were fortunate to win."

Elk Grove won its first two games, 11-6 over Bingham of Utah on Monday and a wild, entertaining 13-12 come-from-behind win over Mira Mesa of San Diego on Tuesday.

In that game, played at hitter-friendly Vista High School, Justin Charles and Zach Miller hit two-run homers in the bottom of the seventh after the Herd fell behind 12-9 in the top half of the inning. Miller's was the walk-off winner.

Charles also hit a solo home run in the first and a grand slam in the second while Miller went four for five.

The two wins guaranteed Elk Grove a trip to the semifinals, so a 11-9 loss to San Ysidro on Wednesday didn't hurt them.

Thursday's game was a gem that Eastlake of Chula Vista won 3-2 in nine innings.

Carlson said Elk Grove led 2-1 with two outs in the seventh when Eastlake got the game-tying single to tie the game.

Jake Rodriguez pitched seven strong innings before giving way to Miller in the eighth. Elk Grove was limited to three hits, although outfielder Brook Brooks hit his third home run of the tournament.

"We got ourselves into a position to win the tournament," Carlson said. "We came out and played well, but (Eastlake) got the timely hit and made some Web-gem outs."

Carlson said the game was played on a pristine diamond at Southwestern Community College in Chula Vista and that the weather was beautiful, unlike the stormy stuff that hit the Sacramento area through most of the week.

"It sprinkled briefly one time, otherwise it was 65 to 75 degrees," Carlson said.

The weather wasn't the only positive to the four-day event.

"We did a lot of things together, including taking in a Dodgers-Padres game Wednesday night," Carlson said.

Elk Grove has been going to the tournament since 1997 and Carlson says it's a great way to transition into the heart of the Delta Valley Conference season, when the games truly count for those hoping to make the postseason.

"The great thing about a tournament like this is that the kids really learn how to pitch," Carlson said. "The umpires have a little smaller strike zone, and the hitters can hit you and and hit you hard. I think our pitchers always come back having learned some valuable lessons."

April 10, 2009
Lacky athlete scholarship recipients are the brightest of the bright

The athletic, academic and community service accomplishments of the Sac-Joaquin Section's 50 A. Dale Lacky scholarship recipients are truly impressive.

Here are just a sampling of some student-athletes' outstanding work:

• Miles Bennett-Smith of Sacramento Country Day is a four-sport athlete who also is editor and chief of the school newspaper, plays in several orchestras and maintains a 4.30 grade-point average. He plans to play soccer in college.

• Brogan Miller of Ponderosa is a swimmer and water polo player who plays the flute and trombone, volunteers as a Special Olympics swim coach and maintains a 4.23 GPA.

• Alyssa Manning of Rio Linda, the school's Outstanding Female Track and Field athlete, started her career at the school by being named the Offensive Lineman of the Year for the freshman football team. A class president for two years and volunteer fund-raiser for Sacramento's Shriners Hospital, she maintains a 4.02 GPA.

• Tegan Schmidt of Whitney is a softball standout and four-year team captain who has been a peer teacher at two Rocklin elementary schools and also a co-founder of the Invisible Children club that aids children in northern Uganda. A 4.24 student, she will play softball next season at Stanford and plans a career in medicine.

• James Derrick of Natomas is a three-time team captain in swimming and tennis, a Breaking Down the Walls student leader, a mock trial MVP and Directors Award recipient in drama. He has a 3.92 GPA and will attend Pacific.

• Andre Larry of Monterey Trail is a three-sport athlete and was the Delta River League's Sportsmanship award recipient in football. Larry has helped plant trees in Elk Grove, volunteered a an animal shelter and is a recipient of the Daughters of American Revolution Good Citizens Award. He has a 4.21 GPA and plans to continue his education in mechanical engineering.

• Michael Sullivan of West Campus, a three-sport athlete and team captain in football the last two seasons, is an after-school elementary school mentor who also founded his own community newspaper, "The Bridgeway Weekly." He is responsible for writing, printing and delivering the paper to more than 250 homes in his neighborhood. With a 4.15 GPA, he was one of two students from Sacramento to receive the Outstanding Scholar Award, presented to him by Senator Dianne Feinstein.

These and the other Lacky recipients will be honored at an awards breakfast ceremony 9 a.m April 21 at the Elkhorn Country Club in Stockton.

The section will award some $34,000 in scholarships this year, with most of the money being raised from the annual Foundation Games in girls volleyball and boys and girls basketball.


April 9, 2009
Bella Vista's Lazaro also helps California wrestlers to national title

Add another area wrestler who played a key role in helping California win the 20th annual National High School Coaches Association Senior Nationals wrestling tournament last weekend in Virginia Beach, Va.

In today's Names and News item on the Preps Plus page recapping the event, we failed to mention that Bella Vista's Bryden Lazaro placed third in the 112-pound division.

Granite Bay's Ryan Loder placed fourth at 189 pounds and Folsom's Jordan Hart was fifth at 145 pounds as California tallied 186.5 points. New York was second with 177.5 points.

Lazaro's weight class was the only one to feature a California individual champion.

Lazaro lost to California's Madison Gambrell 10-8 in the semifinals, then Gambrell fell 5-2 to California's Estevan Cabanas in the finals. Lazaro defeated Scott Mantua of Maryland 5-3 for third place.

Bella Vista coach Mike Lee says that Lazaro's appearance in the nationals had an interesting twist. He was a rare "wild card" entry in being one of the few wrestlers who failed to meet the normal qualifying standards.

He never finished in the top eight at the state finals, a qualifying standard for California wrestlers. But California also is allowed five wild card spots.

Lee called Lazaro's third place finish "an amazing story" and also noted that he was named a prep All-American.

Loder and Hart also achieved All-American status.

April 8, 2009
Oakmont swings potent bats in winning Granite Bay tournament

Oakmont baseball coaches Dean Perkins and Rick Ramirez have to hope that the Vikings' performance in the 18-team Granite Bay Spring Tournament will be the spark to reverse a disappointing first half in the Sierra Foothill League.

The Vikings won all four of their tournament games, including 18-2 in six innings over Woodland in today's championship game at Woodcreek High School.

Oakmont beat Union Mine 6-1 and Rosemont 10-5 on Monday, then downed Bear River 13-1 in five innings today in a game that was postponed from Tuesday because of rain.

In beating Woodland, Oakmont had an eye-popping 24 hits.

Randy Purdy went four for four with a triple and two runs batted in; Tyler Kuresa had three triples and six RBI in five at-bats; and Kory Groves had four hits and three RBIs in five at-bats to lead the way.

Brandon Vargas tossed a five hitter.

Shortly before the title game, and across town at Oakmont High, the Vikings also showed plenty of offense against Bear River.

Purdy had a double and four RBIs and Vargas and Ethan Atkins had two hits and two RBIs each.

Matt Ewing tossed a two-hitter.

Oakmont (9-7, 2-7) came into the tournament having lost six consecutive league games. The Vikings return to league play Tuesday at Roseville.

April 8, 2009
Sheldon still top dogs, Pleasant Grove continues to rise

The latest CalHi Sports Top 20 state softball rankings were released today and there's no surprise at the top -- Sheldon, still unblemished at 12-0 and atop the USA Today/NFCA National Top 25, is No. 1.

Oak Ridge (12-1), ranked No. 2 by The Bee, is holding strong at No. 9, where they've been for several weeks, while Pleasant Grove (14-4), The Bee's No. 3 squad, moved up a spot from No. 12 to No. 11, no doubt aided by last week's strong showing in a 13-inning pitchers duel between Ally Carda and Sheldon's Jolene Henderson, which the Huskies won.

Up next for Sheldon, after today's nonleague game against Woodland (4-7), is another nonleague game at Rodriguez (6-2) next Tuesday before heading to the Livermore Stampede next weekend. The Huskies could run into the state's No. 2 ranked team, Archbishop Mitty (10-0) in bracket play, though they are not in the same pool as the Monarchs.

Oak Ridge jumps back into Sierra Valley Conference play next Tuesday against Vista del Lago (8-8)

Pleasant Grove next takes the field a week from today in a nonleague tilt at home against Rosemont (10-6).

Check tomorrow's Bee for more softball, including 15 players to watch, and on Friday for the latest Top 20.

April 8, 2009
Granite Bay tourney title game looks good to go, but without Yuba City

Barring a sudden deluge, the championship game of the Granite Bay Spring baseball tournament will be played 4 p.m. today at Woodcreek High School.

But the team everyone figured to be in the final, Yuba City, will be playing a consolation game at a different field, despite having not yet lost a game in the three-day, 18-team event.

The Honkers, 14-1 and ranked No. 3 by The Bee, defeated Del Campo 4-3 this afternoon at Woodcreek.

But that wasn't good enough, based on run differential, to make the championship final.

Instead, Oakmont (7-7) and Woodland (8-8), a league rival of Yuba City, are to meet for the championship.

Woodland beat Ponderosa 8-6 earlier today at Granite Bay High School and Oakmont downed Bear River 13-1 at Oakmont.

The Woodland-Ponderosa game was the only one to be played as scheduled at 10 a.m.
The Yuba City-Del Campo and Oakmont-Bear River games had to be delayed a few hours to better prepare rain-soaked fields.

In fact, Oakmont's varsity diamond was so under water that the Vikings and Bruins played on the JV field instead.

Yuba City, which beat Bella Vista 6-5 in last year's final, will again play Del Campo today at 4 p.m., but this time at Del Campo High School.

April 8, 2009
Basketball coaching rival says River City's West will be missed

Foothill boys basketball coach Drew Hibbs says the area is losing one of its most respected coaches in River City's Jon West, who has announced his retirement after 18 years as the Raiders head man.

"When they were better than normal, they were always a tough match-up for us," said Hibbs, whose Mustangs are perennial Capital Valley Conference champions. "When they were not very good, they still were tough. Jon always got his players to play hard. I have a lot of respect for him. Our league is going to miss him."

West, 51, said it was time.

"Nothing trumatic happened," said West, a math teacher at River City. "Nothing at all changed in my life. I'm just looking for more family time. My daughter is a senior and plays college basketball. So I'd like to be able to watch her play."

The Raiders were 79-57 over the last five seasons, including 19-9 this season.

April 7, 2009
Rain puts slight damper on Granite Bay baseball tournament

Granite Bay's Pat Esposito feels more like a juggler than a baseball coach these days.

Esposito is responsible for organizing the 18-team Granite Bay Spring Break Tournament that started Monday and continues through at least Wednesday at six area diamonds.

But add inclement weather, like that which hit the area earlier today, and it just means a longer evening and more phone calls.

"We were able to get six of the nine games in, so that wasn't too bad," Esposito said of today's schedule.

Rained out were three 4 p.m. games: Pondorosa vs. Woodland at Granite Bay; Del Campo vs. Yuba City at Woodcreek; and Oakmont vs. Bear River at Oakmont.

All three have been moved to 10 a.m. tomorrow. The two teams with the best run differential from among the six will advance to the championship game set for 4 p.m. Wednesday at Woodcreek.

Esposito says this will be his last year as tournament director. He hopes that Woodcreek's Kelly Mayo, who originally started the tournament, or another coach will take it over.

"It's time," Esposito said. "I've done it long enough. I really get nervous about the weather. But we usually manage to figure out how to get it done. It's frustrating because it was so beautiful yesterday."

If rain forces more cancellations on Wednesday, Esposito says games could be moved to Thursday.

But that's it.

"We won't back it up to Friday or Saturday," he said. "The kids need some time off and many of them have already made plans with their families."

Consolation games scheduled for Wednesday:

Noon - Rosemont at Bella Vista; Oak Ridge at Roseville and Valley Christian at Casa Roble;

1 p.m. - El Camino vs. Rio Americano at Granite Bay; The four teams that don't reach the championship game from the 10 a.m. games will play at Woodcreek and Oakmont.

4 p.m. - Union Mine at Granite Bay.

April 4, 2009
Rocklin, Sac boys No. 2 in respective Cal-Hi divisional hoops rankings

Cal-Hi Sports has released its final state divisional basketball rankings.
Here's a look at where the area teams wound up.

Boys:
Division I - Folsom, No. 13; D-II - Rocklin, No. 2; Bella Vista, No. 17; D-III - Sacramento, No. 2; D-IV - Christian Brothers, No. 14; D-V - Bradshaw Christian, No. 11.

Girls:
Division I - Kennedy, No. 12; D-II - Oak Ridge, No. 5; D-III Sacramento, No. 6; Del Oro, No. 14; D-V - Bradshaw Christian, No. 13.

April 3, 2009
Heisman winner Tim Brown among speakers at Playmakers event

Former Oakland Raiders star Tim Brown will be among the speakers participating in a character, leadership and values seminar 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at Oak Hills Church in Folsom.

The fund-raising event is put on by Playmakers, the Folsom-based organization that mentors at-risk youth and provides free summer football camps.

For more information, go to www.theplayermakers.org.

April 3, 2009
Placer County vaulters among state's best; locals do well at Stanford Invitational

To watch a video of the Laguna Creek team running the 4X100 boy's relay at last weekend's Stanford Track and Field Invitational click here.


Placer County appears to be establishing itself as the pole vault capital of California this season.

Three boys and three girls are among the state's top 10 in DyeStatCal.com's most recent state high school track and field rankings.

Senior Rob Simmons of Rocklin briefly held the state lead after winning the Stanford Invitational on Friday with a vault of 16 feet, 1 inch.

But Michael Woepse, a junior from Mater Dei of Santa Ana, moved ahead the next day at the Asics Surf City Invitational in Southern California by going 16-4.

On the same day that Woepse set the state mark, senior Derrick Hinch of Placer highlighted the top performers at the Bella Vista High School Bronco Invitational with a winning vault of 15-8, the third best this season.

Rob Simmons and his brother Cale also have vaulted 15-8 in the Weekly Duals on March 15.

It was at the Weekly Duals that Del Oro sophomore MacKenzi Landry reached a then state-best 12-4. She since has fallen to No. 2 after Allison Koressell of Huntington Beach High reached 13-1 in winning Saturday at Surf City.

Woodcreek senior Kayla Kamaka and Granite Bay sophomore Katie Zingheim are ranked ninth and 10th respectively in California with bests of 11-6.

Rob Simmons wasn't the only area athlete to excel at the Stanford Invitational. Landry also won the girls pole vault, with Zingheim second.

Other area highlights from Stanford, one of Northern California's top prep meets:

• The Laguna Creek boys 4x100 relay team not only won the event but established a state best of 41.74 seconds. The Cardinals also finished third in the 4x400 relay in 3.24.72.

• The Oak Ridge girls team of Samantha Ralstin, Maxine Goyette, Jackie Mansoor and Hayley Scott won the girls 4x800 race in 9:33.91, the third best time in the state this season. Scott, a junior, also placed third in the girls mile in a time of 5:01.28.

• Jesuit senior Tom Blocker won the boys 400-meter race in a time of 48.84 seconds.

• Senior Lindsay Machado of El Dorado won the girls discus with a toss of 135 feet, 2 inches.

• Senior Ally Manning of Rio Linda won the girls shot put in 39-09.75 feet.

• Senior Darius Bell of Highlands placed first and Oak Ridge sophomore Will Findlay second in the boys high jump. Both cleared 6-6.

• Sheldon's Tyrell Jagelski placed second in the boys triple jump with a leap of 22-11.75 and teammate D.J. Wright was third at 22-11.25.

• Junior Kaitlin Clancy of Davis placed second in the girls triple jump at 35-06 feet.

• Rio Linda's A.J. Romine placed third in the boys 400 hurdles in 55.79.

April 3, 2009
Rocklin's Lane among Cal-Hi's state player of the year nominees

Rocklin's Brendan Lane is among the nominees for Cal-Hi Sports' 2009 Mr. Basketball State Player of the Year.

Said Cal-Hi of Lane in his nomination:

"In being already picked as the Sacramento Bee's Player of the Year (over a strong field including Sacramento's Chase Tapley), Lane was compared to some of the best centers ever from that area, including (dare we say it) Elk Grove's Bill Cartwright. Lane does have three-point shooting skills at 6-9 and in the CIF Div. II state final he showcased himself with 27 points, 19 rebounds and 10 blocks in Rocklin's loss to Eisenhower. On the season he averaged 22.1 points, 12.1 rebounds, and 4.8 blocks while maintaining a 4.2 grade point average that is likely higher than that of any other finalist. With Lane leading the way, Rocklin captured league, section and NorCal championships to finish 32-3. He will play next at UCLA."

The other nominees are:

• Andrew Bock, Eisenhower, Rialto (Creighton recruit).

• Kawhi Leonard, M.L. King, Riverside (L.A. Times Player of the Year).

• Dominique O'Connor, Westchester, Los Angeles (L.A. Section Player of the Year).

• Renardo Sidney, Fairfax, Los Angeles (USC commit and McDonald's All-American).

• Mike Snaer, Rancho Verde, Moreno Valley (Gatorade State Player of the Year and Florida State recruit).

• Brandon Smith, De La Salle, Concord (Cal recruit).

• David Wear, Mater Dei, Santa Ana (Orange County Register Player of the Year and North Carolina recruit).

April 2, 2009
Respect is mutual for catching phenoms Stassi, Susac

Despite having gotten used to playing at a higher level during national summer showcase baseball events, Yuba City's Max Stassi and Jesuit's Andrew Susac are heavily into their senior seasons of high school - and not just for the impact it will have on their futures.

Stassi hopes to help the Honkers to a third consecutive D-III section title; Susac is out to be part of a D-I repeat on a Jesuit team that features at least six college recruits.

The two potential first round Major League Baseball draft picks, both catchers, also have become good friends.

"He's a great guy, and I hope only the best for him," Max Stassi said. "He has top-of-the-line catch and throw skills behind the plate. He's a tremendous catcher."

"What impresses me most about Max is how he carries himself, his presence on the field," Susac said. "You know who Max Stassi is. You can pick him out."

April 1, 2009
Sierra's Willson says top prep players doing better in classroom

Rob Willson led Sierra College to a California community college state baseball championship last season.

So he's one guy plugged into the local high school baseball scene.

Although we have at least 20 area players who have been recruited by four-year programs, including eight by the Pacific-10, Willson doesn't credit a sudden spike in talent as the reason.

"The talent has always been phenomenal in Placer County," Willson said. "I think the talent has stayed pretty much the same. I think the biggest difference this year is that you have a lot of kids doing better in the classroom, so they are earning scholarships."

Willson also has watched the development of Yuba City's Max Stassi and Jesuit's Andrew Susac, both catchers, who could be selected as high as the first round of the Major League Baseball draft in June.

He's a big fan of both players and thinks they have what it takes to be successful, whether they choose to go to college or sign with a pro team.

Stassi has signed a letter of intent with UCLA; Susac has signed with Oregon State.

The higher they are selected in the draft, the harder it will be to turn down signing bonuses that averaged $2.4 million for first-round picks last season.

"With those two families, the Susacs and the Stassis, I think that's $1 million mark-up because of what they represent.

"You know what you are going to get: Players who are going to keep their nose clean and work their tails off to try to make it to the big leagues.

"It's phenomenal the family support those guys are coming from."

April 1, 2009
Gradin steps down; boost for family, void for Sheldon

Twelve years ago, Bob Baker was ecstatic with the announcement that an upstart school had landed a proven product.

Baker, the Sheldon High School athletic director then and now, recalled today when he hired Scott Gradin to head the boys basketball program. He and principal Paula Duncan wanted an impact coach to lay the foundation for an athletic program that fully expected to be a regional power, to have athletic achievers to match the academic ones.

Mission accomplished.

But now the mission starts all over again. Gradin made it official today, ending a week or so of speculation, in announcing that he was stepping down as the Huskies coach. His body of work complete, Gradin bows out to spend more time with Tyler (who turns 11 on Thursday), and wife Jill.

Tyler and Jill's gain is Sheldon's profound loss.

"I've done this for 20 years, and my life is a lot different now than when it was then," Gradin explained. "Basketball was my life, my priority then. Our lives change. I found myself spending more time with basketball than my family and not seeing my son as much. It's time. The program deserves someone who can put their all into this."

Sheldon annually wheeled out teams that had scorers and scholars, and sometimes both, and that was what made the Huskies one of the section's elite programs. Gradin used that same formula at Rio Americano, leading the Raiders to a Sac-Joaquin Section Division II championship in 1995 as a young coach fast on the rise.

At Sheldon, he went from youngster to veteran, and his formula remained. Blend the scholars in with the ballers and then look out. Trent Redden earlier this decade would tease teammates that his SAT score doubled theirs, even on a bad day. Redden went on to SMU and now works for the Cleveland Cavaliers. And this recently completed season, it was Marcus Jackson who was the steady role player - like Redden in his day - and the scholar, earning an academic scholarship to Arizona State, where he will also walk on to play more hoops.

Gradin is on the extremely short list of the area's top coaches, for any sport. He had a 28-2 team at Sheldon earlier this decade, the group that included Redden, and the Huskies won the D-I section title in 2007.


Gradin leaves the program in fantastic shape. The Huskies will enter next season as one of the region's top-ranked teams, with the return of Ramon Eaton and Darius Nelson, and there's been talk of a spectacular transfer with game. What's more, you would be hard pressed to find a stronger administration than Sheldon.

Baker and Duncan head one of the elite schools any where. Both understand the language of coaches - fundraising, parental pressure, eligibility, exhaustion.

"Scott exceeded expectations here, and not just in wins and losses," Baker said. "He became a complete coach - in the most complimentary way. I can't fault him at all for stepping down, to spend time with family.''

Added Gradin, "It was a hard decision. It's never easy leaving your players. But I'm stepping down for all the right reasons."



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 jdavidson@sacbee.com or bpaterson@sacbee.com.

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