Thursday, March 5, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Four city squads looking to make NorCal hoops history

By
From page B1 | March 12, 2014 |

8-bball-005-682x1024

Modesto Christian's Anthony Townes, right, blocks Fairfield's Javon Adams' shot during the SJS Division III Boys Championship at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, Friday. (Aaron Rosenblatt/Daily Republic)

FAIRFIELD — The consolation prize earned by four city basketball teams for at least making it to the Sac-Joaquin Section semifinals is a trip to the Northern California Regionals.

The four squads – the boys from Rodriguez and Fairfield, and the boys and girls from Vanden – each had their runs through the section tournament end in most disappointing fashion, the Mustangs and Falcons in the finals, both Vikings in the semis.

They’ve each gotten where they are with good balance, superb defense and solid coaching. Their programs each have a history in the NorCals, some of it good, some not.

Here’s a look at each of their seasons and how they’ve done in previous NorCals:

Rodriguez boys

The Mustangs (26-3) are seeded sixth in Division I and host No. 11 Menlo-Atherton (18-9), a 43-41 loser to Bellarmine in the Central Coast Section Division I finals, Wednesday.

Rodriguez’s loss in the SJS Division I title game wasn’t nearly as close, the 96-68 setback at the hands of Jesuit tying the record for biggest margin of defeat in a D-I championship contest.

That doesn’t take away from what’s been a record-setting season for the green, black and white. The Mustangs have already tied the school record for wins in a season, will set a record for winning percentage regardless of how they do Tuesday and won a school-record 19 games at one point. They also earned their first victory over Fairfield.

Senior Rishod Abraham was named Monticello Empire League Player of the Year and Rodriguez won its first outright MEL title.

The Mustangs are making just their second trip into the NorCals, and their first was utterly forgettable.

Just two days after their gut-wrenching 66-65 loss to Folsom in the 2008 SJS Division I title game, Rodriguez dropped an 89-87 overtime decision in an outbracket game to Lincoln of San Francisco.

A plus in the quest for the school’s first NorCal win is the Mustangs won’t be facing the height displayed by Jesuit – a 6-foot-7 forward bringing the ball up the court, for example – with Menlo Atherton. The Bears list one player at 6-5 or taller, 6-6 senior center Oliver Bucka, while the Marauders had four, according to Maxpreps.com.

Fairfield boys

The Falcons (25-6) have the highest seeding of any city team at No. 5, but that still means they have to hit the road should they defeat No. 12 Miramonte (16-12), Wednesday. The winner plays at No. 4 Burlingame (26-4), Saturday.

Miramonte fell 72-65 to Campolindo in the North Coast Section quarterfinals.

The Falcons reached their sixth SJS championship game by topping Vanden 80-59 in the semifinals, avenging two earlier Solano County Athletic Conference defeats.

They hung tough in the finals before losing 61-50 to a much taller Modesto Christian squad.

In similar fashion to Rodriguez, Fairfield has won because of balance, quickness and a suffocating press, led by SCAC Player of the Year DeMoriaye Hart-Spikes.

Aside from their loss to Rodriguez and two setbacks against Vanden, the Falcons went from Dec. 6 to March 7 without losing to anyone outside the city.

This is Fairfield’s fifth trip to the NorCals, the first coming in 1989, the others in a four-year run starting in 2007. The Falcons are 4-5 overall with the biggest win a 62-59 upset of Rocklin in the 2008 semifinals decided by a James Lake 3-pointer at the buzzer.

After looking up all night at taller Modesto Christian players, the Falcons appear to be facing a team their own size – or shorter – Tuesday. According to Maxpreps.com, the Matadors have one player at 6-4, senior forward Drew Anderson, with one at 6-3 and four at 6-2.

Vanden boys

The Vikings (19-11) are making their first NorCal appearance since the 1995-96 team, coached by the legendary Jim Boyd, fell in the finals to Cardinal Newman, 53-48.

If they’re to repeat previous success, they’ll have to be true road warriors. Vanden goes in as the 10th seed and opens at No. 7 Aragon of San Mateo (20-9), the CCS Division III champion, Wednesday

Vanden’s already made history, winning its first league title since Boyd’s last season as coach in 1996-97. Its two wins over Fairfield will be talked about for years, though the Falcons ended the Vikings’ hopes of winning a section title in the SJS semifinals.

Vanden is led by junior guard DeMarre Walker, runner-up to Hart-Spikes in the SCAC Player of the Year voting, and goes big with 6-7 junior forward Jihad Woods and 6-8 center Jansen Smith, and fast with 5-9 sophomore point guard Thomas Avent.

This is the ninth time Vanden’s reached the NorCals, making it to the finals in 1982, 1986, 1990, 1991, 1994 and 1996. The Vikings won regional crowns in 1986 and 1990 with the former going on to win the city’s only state championship.

Vanden should have a height advantage in the NorCal opener as Aragon lists no player taller than 6-3.

Vanden girls

The Vikings (23-6) suffered the most stunning SJS loss of all city teams, going in as the No. 1 seeds before being upset by No. 4 Florin in the semifinals. That dropped Vanden to a No. 6 seed for the NorCals and it opens by hosting No. 11 San Marin of Novato (18-11), Wednesday.

The Mustangs lost 53-51 to Analy in the NCS Division III quarterfinals, their first playoff game, and were crushed 45-21 by Justin-Siena in their regular season finale. Not many teams reach the NorCals riding a two-game losing streak.

Before its loss to Florin, the Vikings had won 11 straight games and captured their 14th straight league championship.

The Vikings have made the NorCals each of the last four seasons – the only four appearances in program history – and are 3-4, going 1-1 three times.

Vanden is led by junior guard Kayla Blair, the SCAC Player of the Year and is backed by a solid lineup, though sophomore guard and senior forward Mariah Williams are hobbled by injuries.

A win sends the Vikings to No. 3 Encinal of Alameda, the team they crushed 69-43 in last year’s first round of NorCals.

Reach Paul Farmer at 425-4646, ext. 264, or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com.

Paul Farmer

Paul Farmer is a 1985 graduate of Brigham Young University. The Suisun City resident has been with the Daily Republic Sports Department since 1989 and has served as sports editor since 2007. He and his wife Jackie have four children.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 1 comment

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • PhotobombMarch 11, 2014 - 9:25 am

    That is a very nice photograph... but a horrible cover photo for a story that is supposed to be positive about our teams... As a photographer, I understand how one would want to post his or her best photograph from a shoot... but not if it shows the opposite of what the story is trying to convey... that young man has to go back to school...

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

 
Show resilience in the face of adversity

By Mayrene Bates | From Page: A2

 
Real McCoy II Ferry set for maintenance

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

Vacaville police slate annual awards ceremony

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

 
Limited damage to apartment from carport fire

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Students sample industry choices during school career fair

By Glen Faison | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
 
National Red Cross Month celebrates heroes

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

Il Fiorello schedules citrus class

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
Jury convicts ex-con who served as own lawyer

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A4

Red Carpet Gala to benefit theater foundation

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Pet remembrance event set in Vallejo

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Friday concert benefits Families Helping Families

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Vallejo police arrest 4 in connection with 3 killings

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A4

 
Suisun City police log: Tuesday, March 3, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

Fairfield police log: Tuesday, March 3, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
.

US / World

 
Justices sharply divided over health care law subsidies

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
California lawmaker pushes child care worker vaccinations

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Children in Southern California breathing easier, study says

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4 | Gallery

Failures by 3 governments preceded homeless man’s death

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Second Los Angeles hospital reports ‘superbug’ infections

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Obama signs Homeland Security funding bill into law

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
House panel issues subpoena for Clinton’s personal emails

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Feds: Evidence backs Ferguson officer’s account in shooting

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

A defiant Alabama regains ground against gay marriage

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
How much sugar is in that? 7 foods with added sugar

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Microsoft co-founder says he found sunken Japan WWII warship

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Coal mine blast kills at least 24 in war-torn east Ukraine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6 | Gallery

.

Living

Today in History: March 5, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: March 5, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: March 5, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

 
I can’t tell if I still want to be married, or just don’t want to be alone

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

DiCaprio partners with Netflix for series of documentaries

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ tops MTV Movie Awards nominations

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Glen Campbell children fighting wife’s control of affairs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4 | Gallery

 
.

Sports

 
Posey has 2-run double in Giants’ 9-2 loss to A’s

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Local report: Vanden softball slips by Rodriguez with late run

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

Curry shoots Warriors to 102-93 victory over Bucks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Prosecutors can’t bring up Florida shooting in ex-NFLer case

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Vikings agree to trade Cassel to Bills

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Scott opens a season of change at Doral

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

‘It WAS him': Defense admits Tsarnaev bombed Boston Marathon

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
With Peterson’s status in question, Vikings pay a visit

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

NFL stadium supporters in LA suburb file ballot paperwork

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Alex Johnson, AL batting champ in 1970, dies at age 72

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Goodell: NFL responsible for Super Bowl seating problems

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Former player Nate Jackson calls for NFL to allow marijuana

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Phoenix to install tire barriers before NASCAR visit

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Pirelli sticks with same tire choices for first 4 F1 races

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

AP Source: Peyton Manning returning for 18th NFL season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
NCAA reports big jump in home runs with new flat-seam ball

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

MLS, players agree in principle to 5-year deal

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

Aaron D. Malave

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
Thelma A. Roche

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Cesar Luis Garcia-Regalado

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Rodolfo Landabora Porquez

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

.

Comics

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9