Joe Davidson

Two Lees reach coaching milestones

Mike Lee recently recorded his 300th dual-match victory as wrestling coach at Bella Vista High School. The program celebrated the achievement last week during a home match against Ponderosa on senior night.
Mike Lee recently recorded his 300th dual-match victory as wrestling coach at Bella Vista High School. The program celebrated the achievement last week during a home match against Ponderosa on senior night. rbenton@sacbee.com

It’s been a good winter for regional high school coaches named Lee.

In boys basketball, Mark Lee earned the 500th victory of his 29-year career – seven seasons at San Juan and the last 22 at Placer. He has 399 victories at Placer with a chance to make Wednesday’s home game against Foothill at historic Earl Crabbe Gym even more special.

Before tipoff, the Placer Athletic Hall of Fame committee will present Lee with a plaque commemorating his 500 wins. Then the Hillmen will try to avenge a 58-55 loss to the Mustangs on Jan. 19, when their 20-game winning streak in Pioneer Valley League play was snapped.

Placer (21-3) has won four in a row since that defeat. The Hillmen, ranked No. 9 by The Sacramento Bee, are led by 6-foot-8 senior center/forward Jeremy Lillis, who had 28 points and 13 rebounds Friday in a 71-58 win over Lincoln.

In wrestling, Mike Lee, no relation to Mark, recently recorded his 300th dual-match victory at Bella Vista. The program celebrated the achievement last week during a home match against Ponderosa on senior night.

At the Sac-Joaquin Section team duals Saturday, Bella Vista, competing in Division II, beat Beyer of Modesto 58-13 before falling to Pitman of Turlock 43-20.

Bella Vista’s storied program includes 10 section champions, seven state champions, 40 state medalists and eight All-Americans. Mike Lee has been the Broncos’ coach since 1994. From 1962 to 1984, former Bella Vista wrestling coach Charlie Lee, no relation to Mike, led the Broncos to six top-five finishes in the state, guided six state individual champions and posted a dual-meet record of 242-28-1. Charlie Lee, who was inducted into the California Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2001, died in 2010.

Charlie Lee’s son, David, was California’s first three-time state champion and compiled a 145-7 record from 1981 to 1984 at Bella Vista. Charlie Lee’s wife and David’s mother, Ralphene, also a member of the California Wrestling Hall of Fame for decades of contribution, was on hand to celebrate Mike Lee’s 300th victory.

Championship wrestling – Vacaville beat Elk Grove 30-26 to win the section Division I team duals, the program’s 21st such banner. Vacaville beat Del Oro 44-25 in the semifinals. Elk Grove, going for a repeat, finished second for the 10th time.

Pitman beat Golden Valley of Merced 43-21 for the D-II title, and Oakdale beat Benicia 51-18 in the D-III final. Inderkum topped Yuba City 45-24 for the D-IV crown. The Masters meet is Feb. 24-25 at Stockton Arena.

Tigers prowl – Inderkum is coming together in girls basketball at the right time.

Once 1-12, the Tigers have climbed into the playoff race, needing to finish at least third in the Tri-County Conference to advance. After beating then-No. 10 River City 66-58 on Jan. 31, Inderkum took sole possession of third place with a 65-38 victory over Woodland on Thursday.

The Tigers, 7-3 in league, trail eighth-ranked Rio Linda (8-1) and 11th-ranked River City (8-2). Inderkum visits fourth-place River Valley on Tuesday and closes the regular season at Rio Linda on Feb. 14.

Against River City, sophomore Nailah Dillard had 16 points, her twin sister Naomi scored eight, and freshman Maile Williams had 14. Nailah Dillard and Williams excel at ballhandling, scoring, defending and shooting free throws. Dillard sat out the first 30 days of the season because of her transfer from Sacramento.

Inside forces – Colfax’s Caleigh McClenahan is the area’s leading rebounder, averaging 14.7. Nevada Union’s Meadow Aragon is second at 13.8, followed by Rosemont’s Jada Ellison at 13.4 and River Valley’s Cailyn Francis and Freedom Christian’s Cora Lanthier, tied at 12.7.

Union Mine’s Miranda Zaragoza leads the region in blocks with 103, averaging 4.48.

Joe Davidson: 916-321-1280, @SacBee_JoeD

Girls basketball

The Bee’s Top 20

(With previous ranking; records through Saturday)

1. Sacramento (1) 16-7

2. McClatchy (2) 20-3

3. St. Francis (4) 16-7

4. Elk Grove (3) 19-5

5. West Campus (5) 17-3

6. Folsom (6) 21-3

7. Oak Ridge (7) 15-9

8. Rio Linda (9) 19-5

9. Roseville (11) 17-6

10. Antelope (8) 16-7

11. River City (10) 16-8

12. Davis (12) 15-8

13. Foothill (13) 22-2

14. Woodcreek (14) 14-9

15. Capital Christian (15) 16-7

16. Vista del Lago (–) 19-5

17. Cosumnes Oaks (18) 16-7

18. Whitney (19) 16-7

19. Union Mine (20) 15-6

20. Placer (–) 12-11

Boys basketball

The Bee’s Top 20

(With previous ranking; records through Saturday)

1. Sheldon (1) 22-2

2. Woodcreek (2) 21-2

3. Burbank (3) 21-2

4. Capital Christian (4) 15-7

5. Grant (5) 19-6

6. Folsom (6) 18-6

7. Vista del Lago (7) 18-6

8. Christian Brothers (9) 14-9

9. Placer (10) 21-3

10. Rio Linda (11) 21-3

11. Roseville (12) 14-9

12. Whitney (13) 19-4

13. Ponderosa (14) 15-8

14. Sacramento (15) 14-9

15. Jesuit (8) 12-12

16. Yuba City (16)14-10

17. Inderkum (17) 17-6

18. Granite Bay (18) 14-9

19. West Campus (19) 14-9

20. Liberty Ranch (20) 17-7

Joe Davidson

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