Sunday, November 22, 2015

BCS Football Honored At Championship Dinner

It’s a place where weddings and fancy banquets are served. There’s an opulent spa for folks that, well, like that kind of body treatment.

In the front of this sprawling complex is a wine tasting bar and an eloquent hotel and all this in the middle of the vineyards that surround the City of  Lodi.

But, this night Wine and Roses was the host site of the Sac-Joaquin Section’s football finalists in divisions four through seven.

The head coaches brought a school administrator and six of his players to hear congratulatory words from Section Commissioner Mike Garrison, eat a terrific barbeque chicken dinner, topped off by creamy vanilla ice cream, and then hear an encouraging, motivational speech from Sacramento State’s football coach Jody Sears.

One would think Bradshaw Christian seniors Phillip White, Kyle Wilburn, Michael Sinclair, Nik Altamura and Zack Moody along with sophomore Mateo Bromstead would be used to such fanfare because these boys are all playing for the school’s fifth Section championship over the past eight years. But, no, they are all excited and looking forward to what they hope Saturday night will be another football championship for their school.

“It would be great to go out and win a championship in our last season at Bradshaw Christian,” Wilburn, the team quarterback, said. “This is the only sport I play, so for me it would wrap everything up for me. I’d say it’s pretty important for us to win.”

“It’s what we’ve been working for all four years,” Sinclair, a safety and wide receiver, said. “It’s something to leave a legacy so the underclassmen remember you.”

“To me it’s leaving a legacy, to go out on top,” White, a big defensive end and tight end, said.

This year the opponent is Hilmar, a club that was 9-3, 4-1 and co-champions in the Trans-Valley League. Two years ago when these Bradshaw seniors were sophomores when they beat Ripon Christian, 35-28, in an exciting game played at Lodi’s Grape Bowl.

Saturday, the Pride will take on the Yellowjackets at Lincoln High School’s Spanos Stadium in Stockton. Kick off is 6:30 p.m.

“They are a big team, real fast, very disciplined and well-coached,” Sinclair said. “They are in the championship for a reason, so we’ve got to go out and play our game.”

(from left) Michael Sinclair, Mateo Bromstead, Zack Moody, Nik Altamura, Phillip White, Jr. and Kyle Wilburn

In Hilmar, the Pride will have their hands full. The Yellowjackets are the number one seed in Division VI and are on a six-game winning streak. Head coach Frank Marques expects a big send-off by their small dairy farming community Saturday afternoon when the team loads the buses and heads north to Stockton.

“They are all in,” Marques described his town’s passion for its high school football. “Every time we’re in a Section final, the fire trucks come out, lights and sirens are going, everyone in town comes out, lines the street when we leave. Saturday will be the same thing.”

The Yellowjackets are no stranger to Section football titles. In 2011, they won the Division IV championship and were runner-ups in 2013.

One big thing Bradshaw has going for it is its experience in the Section championship game. They’ve won the title in 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2013. Their only loss in the big game came in 2010 in a defeat to Brookside Christian.

Plus, winning Saturday would give this Pride team 12 wins on the football field this season.

 “That’s what’s driving me right now, “ Altamura said.

Officially, though, Bradshaw will have 11 victories because they had to forfeit a 61-0 game over Big Valley Christian in week zero. A player who participated in that contest was ruled ineligible.

Whether or not the Pride are victorious Saturday, this group is special, especially to offensive line coach Chris Abe.

“This group has set a standard for Bradshaw Christian football that will last forever,” Abe said.

CRC Soccer Wins Playoff Opener

Cosumnes River College’s womens soccer team opened the CCCAA playoffs Friday by defeating the #3 seed in Northern California, San Joaquin Delta College, 2-1.

The Hawks (9-10-3) were led by Jessica DeAnda and Erica Lim (Sheldon H.S.) who each scored a goal.

CRC will now take on Folsom Lake College Tuesday in the second round of the playoffs. Folsom Lake were 3-1 winners Friday over Hartnell College.

Windmiller, Mawson To Compete In State XCountry Meet

Sheldon’s  Lauren Windmiller and Cosumnes Oaks’ Jacob Mawson will represent Elk Grove in Saturday’s CIF State Cross Country Meet at Woodward Park in Fresno. Windmiller finished 11th in the Girls Sac-Joaquin Section Division I championship on Nov. 14.

Mawson was 12th in the boys’ division I meet run in Folsom.

Foundation Games Monday

The official start to the basketball season is Monday, Nov. 30th with the “Foundation Games.” The contests played that night won't count in the win-loss standings, but it is a good opportunity to see area teams. The money from the gate of those games go to the A. Dale Lacky Scholarship and Women in Sports Conference.

One game to see will be Franklin at home against Burbank.  It will be the debut of new Wildcats' boys coach Ken Manfredi and girls’ coach Mike Johnson.

The girls play at 6 p.m. and the boys at 8 p.m.

Other foundations games will be: Bradshaw Christian at McClatchy, Laguna Creek at Enochs, Elk Grove at Tokay and Sheldon at Yuba City.

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