Joe Davidson

High school notes: Whitney special captains honor CHP officer

Three sons of CHP Officer Nathan Taylor, a local resident who died after he was struck by an SUV on March 12 while tending to a traffic collision in a snowstorm on Interstate 80 in the Sierra Nevada, were invited by Whitney High’s football team to serve as honorary captains last week.
Three sons of CHP Officer Nathan Taylor, a local resident who died after he was struck by an SUV on March 12 while tending to a traffic collision in a snowstorm on Interstate 80 in the Sierra Nevada, were invited by Whitney High’s football team to serve as honorary captains last week. rpench@sacbee.com

When Whitney beat Del Campo 47-28 on Friday, the mood went from reflective and somber to cheerful and inspired.

The surging Wildcats had three honorary captains for the Capital Valley Conference game: Preston, Wyatt and Josh Taylor, the sons of CHP Officer Nathan Taylor, who died after being struck by a sport-utility vehicle March 12 while investigating a traffic collision during a snowstorm on Interstate 80 in the Sierra Nevada.

Whitney coach Paul Doherty asked Taylor’s sons to lead the 10th-ranked Wildcats onto their home field in Rocklin and participate in the coin toss. Jake Cruz passed for 385 yards and six touchdowns, one to Willie Brocchini, the game captain and son of firefighter Andy Brocchini.

17 Points by Rio Americano’s Logan Wheeler in a 25-12 win over Highlands

“It was an awesome night,” Doherty said. “We honored all servicemen and women, and I’m mostly proud of the reception our players gave the boys. Totally genuine, and they embraced the boys into the team. I was thrilled to be a part of it and the great experience for those little boys.”

Rankings – Two games involving top-10 teams from the Sierra Foothill League highlight Friday’s schedule.

Top-ranked Del Oro hosts No. 3 Folsom, and No. 6 Rocklin hosts No. 9 Oak Ridge. All four teams expect to win the SFL and a Sac-Joaquin Section championship. Regardless of Friday’s outcomes, all four appear locks to reach the playoffs again if they win at least two league games.

Del Oro, the defending CIF State Division II-AA champion, moved to No. 1 in The Sacramento Bee’s Top 20 after Sacramento beat Folsom 32-27 to end the Bulldogs’ 64-week run atop the rankings. Rocklin lost 21-20 to Grant, which rose to No. 2 last week but lost 24-17 at Elk Grove on Friday in a Delta League game.

Elk Grove rose two spots to No. 4, one notch ahead of Grant.

More than a kicker – Junior Logan Wheeler accounted for 17 of Rio Americano’s points in a 25-12 victory over Highlands on Friday. He made field goals of 39, 45 and 45 yards and two extra points and returned a kickoff 45 yards for a touchdown. Wheeler also made five tackles for the Raiders, who play longtime rival El Camino on Friday at Del Campo in a Capital Athletic League matchup of 3-2 teams.

385 Jake Cruz’s passing yardage in Whitney’s 47-28 win over Del Campo

Remembering Scorza Pete Scorza, who led Kennedy to its greatest football success a generation ago, will be remembered before the Cougars’ Metropolitan Conference game against rival McClatchy on Friday. Scorza, who died in August at 65 from multiple myeloma, led Kennedy to a league championship in 1987 and the school’s lone Bee No. 1 ranking early in the 1991 season. Scorza, a Sacramento High and Sacramento State graduate, is in the Kennedy athletic Hall of Fame.

New Del Oro coach – Shawn Huckaby has been named Del Oro’s girls basketball coach. The longtime Golden Eagles assistant replaces Mike Takayama, who died of a heart attack in June. Takayama guided Del Oro, his alma mater, to a section girls record 627 victories with 28 playoff teams and 18 league championships.

Joe Davidson: 916-321-1280, @SacBee_JoeD

The Bee’s Top 20

With last week’s ranking

1. Del Oro (1) 6-0

2. Sacramento (4) 4-1

3. Folsom (5) 5-1

4. Elk Grove (6) 4-1

5. Grant (2) 4-1

6. Rocklin (3) 4-1

7. Jesuit (7) 4-1

8. Antelope (8) 5-0

9. Oak Ridge (9) 4-1

10. Whitney (10) 4-1

11. Roseville (11) 5-0

12. Franklin (14) 4-1

13. Sheldon (12) 4-1

14. Monterey Trail (13) 4-1

15. Vista del Lago (16) 3-2

16. Inderkum (17) 3-2

17. Liberty Ranch (19) 4-1

18. Christian Brothers (–) 3-2

19. Capital Christian (–) 4-2

20. Dixon (–) 4-1

Dropped out: Del Campo, Cosumnes Oaks, Bear River

Joe Davidson

This week’s schedule

Kickoffs between 7-7:30 p.m. unless noted

Friday

TOP 20

No. 3 Folsom at No. 1 Del Oro

Pleasant Grove at No. 5 Grant

No. 9 Oak Ridge at No. 6 Rocklin

No. 8 Antelope at No. 11 Roseville

No. 10 Whitney at Ponderosa

No. 12 Franklin at No. 14 Monterey Trail

Davis at No. 13 Sheldon

No. 15 Vista del Lago vs. Casa Roble at Folsom

River City at No. 16 Inderkum

Union Mine vs. No. 17 Liberty Ranch at Galt

No. 18 Christian Brothers vs. Mira Loma at El Camino

Marysville at No. 20 Dixon

OTHER GAMES

Argonaut at Amador

Bradshaw Christian at Fremont

Burbank vs. Valley at Cosumnes River College

Del Campo at Cosumnes Oaks

El Camino vs. Rio Americano at Del Campo

El Dorado at Rosemont

Encina at San Juan

Florin at Johnson

Foothill at Center

Galt at Cordova

Lincoln at Bear River

McClatchy at Kennedy

Mesa Verde at Natomas

Nevada Union at Woodcreek

Oakmont at Bella Vista

Placer at Colfax

Rio Vista at Highlands

River Valley vs. Woodland at Pioneer

West Campus at Lindhurst

Western Sierra at Delta

Yuba City at Rio Linda

Saturday

TOP 20

Laguna Creek at No. 2 Sacramento, 1 p.m.

No. 4 Elk Grove at No. 7 Jesuit, 1 p.m.

OTHER GAME

Woodland Christian vs. Valley Christian at Highlands, 7 p.m.

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