Joe Davidson

Elk Grove makes sure Sheldon’s softball team won’t have perfect season

Sisters Jordan, left, and Maci Fines anchored the Sheldon High School softball infield, and they led the Huskies past Tracy 2-1 for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I championship in 2015-16. Top-ranked Sheldon fell last week to rival Elk Grove 4-3 in league opener.
Sisters Jordan, left, and Maci Fines anchored the Sheldon High School softball infield, and they led the Huskies past Tracy 2-1 for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I championship in 2015-16. Top-ranked Sheldon fell last week to rival Elk Grove 4-3 in league opener. Joe Davidson

Softball coaches preach that league races will be competitive, but sometimes that doesn’t ring true.

It does in the Delta League.

Top-ranked Sheldon found out last week, falling to rival Elk Grove 4-3 in league opener. The Thundering Herd halted a 31-game winning streak for the defending Sac-Joaquin Section Division I champions who had some area coaches on the eve of the season wondering if the experienced Huskies might go unbeaten this season.

Victoria Lowe scattered nine hits and escaped a seventh-inning jam to earn the victory. Ava Hand had two RBIs while Nina Revoir and Lowe each drove in one for the Thundering Herd, who moved up to No. 2 in The Bee’s rankings. Sheldon remains No. 1 because The Bee’s rankings, much like those across the state for other newspapers and websites such as Cal-Hi Sports and NorCal Preps, factor in the overall body of work, not just single games. The rematch is April 20 at Sheldon.

Revoir, a junior infielder, is batting .423 with 11 hits and 11 RBIs for Elk Grove (8-2). Lowe and Hand are a combined 6-2. Hand beat Davis 2-1 with a complete-game effort. Elk Grove is coached by Amanda Buck, who set basketball scoring records at Elk Grove from 1997-2000. She is in her second season with the Herd softball program, replacing longtime coach Jeff Alexander.

“We’re playing really well right now, so hopefully we keep it up,” Buck said.

▪ Kennedy softball coach Joe Spatafore won his 150th game with the Cougars, an 18-1 effort against Florin for a seven-game winning streak. Kennedy (8-2) is led by infielders Kiana Lee, headed to UC Davis on an academic scholarship, and junior preseason All-American Mia Santos, who is drawing recruiting offers and interest.

“Great students, great players,” said Spatafore, who is in his second tour at Kennedy.

▪ Kenny Munguia won his 250th game as Sacramento’s baseball coach, a 7-5 victory over Florin. DJ Smith had a bases-loaded, two-out triple in the bottom of the seventh to win it. Munguia said a good form of “baseball therapy” is to go to the Dragons’ diamond on off days to mow the field.

▪ The celebration of life for 1970s Cordova football star Reggie Young is Tuesday at noon at Destiny Church, 5230 Ehrhardt Ave. in Sacramento. A 6-foot-2, 195-pound running back in high school, Young was arguably the best player for the famed 1970s Lancers dynasty, going 35-1 as a three-year starter from 1975-77. Young, who died of heart failure on March 17, produced one of the most prolific efforts in regional history, rushing for 291 yards and four touchdowns in a 1977 playoff win over Mira Loma before playing on scholarship at Oregon.

▪ The CIF handed out sportsmanship awards after state basketball championships at Golden 1 Center, including one each for local players. They were: Jackson Hughes, whose Woodcreek team lost 74-67 to Bishop Montgomery of Torrance in the boys Open Division championship; Gabriella Rones, who helped West Campus defeat Los Osos of Rancho Cucamongo 63-55 in girls Division IV; and Kamaree Donald of McClatchy, whose team lost to Windward of Los Angeles 53-41 in girls D-I.

▪ Notable quotable: Perhaps the most accurate quote of the weekend at Golden 1 Center was delivered by Jeff Ota, the McClatchy coach, who said: “Win with humility, lose with grace. And do both with dignity.”

▪ Patrick Roth has stepped down as the boys’ basketball coach at Cosumnes Oaks, where he guided seven playoff teams in eight seasons as the only head coach in program history. His success included two league championships in 2012 and 2013 and a trip to the NorCal Division II finals in 2014. Roth said he had grown tired of coaching and of parents blaming him for not producing more scholarship players.

▪ Area coaches are encouraged to submit nominations for Bee All-Metro basketball selections (first team, second team, third team, honorable mention) by Wednesday. Also, all-league team lists are welcomed to ensure publication. Email jdavidson@sacbee.com.

Joe Davidson: 916-321-1280, @SacBee_JoeD

The Bee’s Softball Rankings

Records through Sunday, last week in parentheses

1. Sheldon (1) 7-1

2. Elk Grove (8) 8-2

3. River City (3) 6-1-1

4. Del Campo (2) 8-4

5. Rocklin (4) 6-3-1

6. Whitney (7) 7-2

7. Casa Roble (5) 6-3

8. Christian Brothers (6) 9-2-1

9. Yuba City (9) 8-2-1

10. Granite Bay (10) 8-3

11. Ponderosa (11) 7-5

12. Del Oro (12) 5-3-1

13. Vista del Lago (13) 5-5

14. Bella Vista (15) 5-4

15. Lincoln (-) 9-2

16. Oakmont (14) 7-5

17. Pleasant Grove (18) 7-3

18. Woodcreek (16) 7-5

19. St. Francis (17) 5-7

20. Oak Ridge (20) 5-4

Mike McGough

The Bee’s Baseball rankings

Records through Sunday, last week in parentheses

1. Davis (1) 6-1

2. Granite Bay (3) 5-0-1

3. Elk Grove (2) 3-4

4. Oak Ridge (5) 2-3

5. Pleasant Grove (6) 4-1

6. Jesuit (4) 1-5

7. Franklin (8) 3-3-1

8. Woodcreek (7) 3-2

9. Sheldon (9) 6-2

10. Capital Christian (10) 8-0

11. Del Oro (11) 3-3

12. Vista del Lago (12) 6-0

13. Christian Brothers (13) 5-0

14. Bella Vista (14) 4-2

15. Del Campo (16) 6-5

16. River Valley (15) 5-3

17. Ponderosa (-) 6-2

18. Lincoln (17) 5-4

19. Rio Americano (19) 2-4

20. Rocklin (18) 1-5

Mike McGough

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