RIPON - For a sophomore, Cole Herrin plays and acts like he's been there, done that.
Ripon Christian opened the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-V playoffs just as is expected from the tournament's No. 1 seed, demolishing Tioga High of Groveland 69-35 Wednesday.
The area's three remaining girls basketball teams are each one win away from qualifying for NorCals while advancing into the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs semifinal round.
For the remainder of the season it is win at all costs, and that was obviously the mindset for the East Union Lancers in their 58-48 Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III first-round win over Dixon High Tuesday at the Dalben Center.
Defense helped Manteca High overcome dry spells on the offensive end Tuesday in its first-round showdown with 12th-seeded Natomas in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III girls basketball playoffs.
RIPON - In the end, it didn't matter that the Ripon Christian girls basketball team nearly surrendered a 20-point lead and virtually invited the visiting Victory Christian Vikings into a game they were never in.
Being the second best team in the Trans Valley League was not good enough to earn Ripon High's girls basketball team a home game in the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-IV playoffs, and it proved costly in the Indians' 78-68 overtime loss to Linden High Tuesday.
The Sierra High girls basketball barely earned one of 16 Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III playoff berths, but getting in earned the Timberwolves a matchup with the tourney's No. 1 seed,
WESTON RANCH - The season came to crashing halt Tuesday for the Weston Ranch High girls varsity basketball team.
Even though blue-chip prospect Josiah Turner, a 6-foot-3 point guard bound for Arizona, was dismissed by the team last month, Sacramento High may still be favored to defend its Division-III crown in the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs.
With five teams qualifying and three Manteca Unified schools hosting a first-round game, the Valley Oak League is well-represented in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III girls basketball playoffs - so far.
Good news first: Sierra High's two losses to end the Valley Oak League girls basketball season last week had no effect on its postseason chances.
EL DORADO HILLS – Closing the Sac-Joaquin Section Divisional Wrestling tournaments with a berth into the SJS Masters meet was the primary goal, but Weston Ranch's Donnell Simms was able to take it a step further by winning the 189-pound championship on his way to the Masters.
Weston Ranch's boys basketball team was expected to contend for the Valley Oak League title this season, even with three sophomores in the starting lineup.
One team was trying to close out a frustrating season with one last quality effort.
They may be young, but the Manteca Buffaloes are proving to be fast learners.
STOCKTON - The fall from grace has been sudden and swift for the Lathrop boys basketball team, but coach Nate McGrath can see the potential in all the losses.
LATHROP - Gurveen Bal hit a 3-pointer in the middle of a 14-0 second-quarter run to give the Lathrop girls basketball team the lead for good in a 34-31 win over Chavez-Stockton on Monday.
Weston Ranch brought home the third-place trophy from 37th Annual Tony Contreras Delta Queen Classic on Saturday with a 61-48 win over McNair-Stockton, and three-year Cougars starter Elisabeth Alexander received All-Tournament honors as well as the award for most points scored in the three-day affair at 71 points.
STOCKTON – It came down to one bout.
STOCKTON - Sierra's uneven effort of late was bound to catch up to the Timberwolves.
Weston Ranch mounted a late charge but came up short in a 53-50 loss to Merced in the semifinal round of the 37th Annual Tony Contreras Delta Queen Classic at Stagg High on Friday.
With intentions of challenging his team, Manteca head coach Brett Lewis sent out an email to coaches from the Bay Area and Sacramento region in the offseason to set up a nonleague game.
Elisabeth Alexander wasn't entirely satisfied with her effort Thursday in the first round of the 37th Annual Tony Contreras Delta Queen Classic at Stagg High.
STOCKTON - The Sierra High Timberwolves saw their 23-point, second-half lead dwindle down to a single point in the final seconds against Chavez Thursday.
Sierra cross country coach Mike Rosendin has been named one of the Sac-Joaquin Section's six Model Coaches of the Year.
Cole Stevens had his best shooting effort on a night in which he did not feel well.
Gregori-Modesto closed out the first half against host Manteca on an 11-2 run and then watched the Buffaloes blitz out of the locker room on a 21-4 run on the way to a 57-52 non-league boys basketball win at Winter Gymnasium.
Much has changed in the Southern League volleyball ranks, but one thing has remained the same: Ripon Christian still rules this court.
In a matchup of 6-foot-8 centers, it was 5-10 guard Daniel Wyatt who came through in a big way for Sierra in its McDonald's Classic opener Wednesday at Delta College.