TUOLOMNE - They call it the great equalizer.
DAVIS - Ripon Christian had not lost a postseason game, let alone a match, leading up to its Sac-Joaquin Section Division V championship-round meeting against top-seeded Bradshaw Christian.
DAVIS - Ripon has proven time and again that it can beat Christian Brothers.
Eric Reis is a fan of the Sac-Joaquin Section's new playoff format.
Sierra will venture into familiar territory Friday when the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs kick off but will wear an unfamiliar target on its back.
Back in September it seemed like a nine-point loss to a middle-of-the-pack Trans Valley League team, now Ripon High's 32-23 win over the Summerville Bears glares as the only blemish on an otherwise perfect Summerville season.
Area goal leader Braian Gomez was one of five Sierra Timberwolves named to the all-Valley Oak League first team.
Neither squad has anything to prove.
A strong showing on the 2009 season lifted Sierra High into the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III Volleyball Championships and some of the squads' top individual performers were recognized.
RIPON - Just getting to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV girls volleyball championship at UC Davis Thursday would have thrilled the seventh-seeded Summerville Bears, but the berth merely seemed like business as usual for No. 3 in its 3-0 sweep over the visiting Mother Lode League champions.
AUBURN - Ripon Christian is back in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division V title match for the third straight year with a chance to win a third straight title.
For the fourth straight season, in-town rivals Ripon and Ripon Christian are in the Sac-Joaquin Section's final-four round.
Manteca head coach Eric Reis tried to anticipate whom his team would face in the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs, narrowing it down to a handful of candidates.
FOLSOM – Those who were running in the Sac-Joaquin Section Cross Country meet had already outlasted most of the high school distance runners, but that was not enough for Sierra High senior John Bowers who extended his season with a berth in the CIF State Championships at Woodward Park in Fresno.
The Valley Oak League's defending boys golf champion bounced back well after sustaining its first loss of the early season.
By JONAMAR JACINTO
Manteca picked up its first Valley Oak League win of the season with its best score so far, beating Lathrop 247-305 on Manteca Park Golf Course's par-37 front nine.
The Buffalo Cup champion met the consolation winner in Stockton on Tuesday, but both Manteca and Franklin were shorthanded because of spring break.
Patterson started the season with three competitive losses that were decided by a combined four-run margin.
Sophomore Danielle Sperry improved to 3-0 with her eight-strikeout, three-hit gem, and Ripon continued its early-season roll with a 7-0 win over visiting Summerville on Tuesday.
LATHROP – History has followed Gabe Padilla's arrival on the Lathrop High campus, but even the second-year soccer coach understands they are but small steps in a long climb.
RIPON - Ripon wasn't at its best in an 11-1 nonleague win over Lathrop on Monday but was plenty good enough to end it in the bottom of the fifth on Cara Brown's two-run double.
STOCKTON - Wins have not come easy for Weston Ranch and Monday was no different, as Central Valley of Ceres rolled to a 9-0 non-league win.
In a battle of unbeatens Monday, Manteca High returned from Jackson with its perfect record still intact but had to hold off a late charge for a 4-3 victory over Argonaut.
Ripon Christian's girls basketball team is making its third straight CIF Northern California Regional Division V Championships appearance Wednesday and fourth in five years when it takes on NorCal newcomer St. Vincent de Paul in Petaluma.
East Union's softball team nipped St. Mary's 5-4 Saturday in the championship game of the Ted Yoneda Classic, which was hosted by St. Mary's at Arnaiz Stadium in Stockton.
A sluggish start ended up costing Lathrop High's girls soccer team in a 3-2 loss at Edison on Monday.
Sierra sophomore Josh Spooner crossed the finish line and aggressively pumped his fists in celebration Saturday at the Tom Moore Relays at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium.
Jasmine Basuil made a veteran-like save during Saturday's penalty-kick shootout against Valley Oak League rival Oakdale at Guss Schmeidt Field.