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Redskins softball win first 2 playoff games

The Calaveras Redskins softball team is one win away from playing in the Division V Sac-Joaquin Section Championship game.

Calaveras defeated Lindhurst 4-2 its first match and topped Ripon 8-4 in its second contest on Wednesday at the Arnaiz Softball Complex in Stockton.

“It’s nice to be able to win those two games,” said Calaveras head coach Mike Koepp. “The second one was more impressive. It was a good team win for us. Everyone contributed. It was nice.”


World title shot: Drive, hard work lead TJ Dillashaw to championship bout

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Jason Buck / Union Democrat Angels Camp native TJ Dillashaw (above) briefly stopped training for a quick photograph earlier this month at Urijah Faber’s Ultimate Fitness in Sacramento. Dillashaw (below) was training there six days a week in preparation for his world championship fight against belt holder Renan Barao on May 24.
W
hen Tyler Jeffrey Dillashaw steps into the Octagon at UFC 173 in Las Vegas, two decades of hard work, grit and determination will pay off with a chance to win a world championship. 

TJ will headline the May 24 pay-per-view main event with bantamweight title holder Renan Barao. It will be the first championship fight for the former Bret Harte wrestling standout.

“I got goosebumps when I heard about the fight,” TJ said. “I was crazy excited. I was supposed to fight someone else, but it just worked out. I was next in line. I knew that if I put in the hard work, my time would come.”

But for the 28-year-old Angels Camp native, his journey to this world championship opportunity was achieved through heart and the drive and fire to outwork everybody else.

It was 20 years in the making.


Skins win! Durham shuts down Escalon

Calaveras ace Wyatt Durham fired a complete game to help lead the Redskins over Escalon 5-3 Monday in the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division V Baseball Championships.

Escalon will not return to the section championship game for the first time in five years. The Cougars owned the section title from 2010-12 and were the runners-up in 2013, but Durham and the Redskins jumped on the traditional powerhouse and never let up.

“Wyatt’s all of 5-6 and 135 pounds, but when it comes to grit and determination, he can’t be beat,” said Redskins head coach Tom DeLappe.


No. 7 Bullfrogs stun No. 2 Grizzlies

In Bret Harte’s first trip to the first round of the Division VI Sac-Joaquin Section Championships in more than five years, the Bullfrogs girls’ soccer team earned a 1-0 overtime road victory against host Mariposa on Thursday.

Bullfrog sophomore Maddie Fichtner scored the match’s lone goal off an assist from Sarah Diamanti-Wilson at the six minute mark in the first extra time period and held on for the upset win over No. 2 Mariposa.

“It was a pretty intense game,” said Bret Harte head coach Miguel Santos. “It was a back and forth game. Mariposa was pretty good. They held onto the ball. It was really intense. 

“It’s exciting because we didn’t talk about playoffs, but we’re in and we’re trying to do our best. I’m going to do my best as a coach, and I know the girls are going to try hard.”


New S’ville bass club started by students

Two Summerville High School students established a fishing club in April in hopes of competing in bass tournaments.

Chad Sweitzer, 16, is acting club president and Salvador Jurado serves as vice president.

The club is advised by Summerville Principal David Johnstone.

“The bass fishing club at Summerville is going to inspire students to really get out in nature and give back to the community,” Johnstone said. “We want to do some great things. We want to enter competitions and let the kids have fun.”


Knowles bashing softballs at Cabrillo

Cassidy Knowles could not have recorded her first college hit in better fashion.

In her third career game with Cabrillo College in Aptos, the 2013 Sonora High graduate hit a grand slam at the Monterey Tournament to help the Seahawks beat Feather River 8-4 on Feb. 1.

“That was huge,” said Cabrillo head coach Kristy Ballinger. “We knew Cassidy had a lot of power. For it to actually show on her first hit, we knew we had something special.”


Free tennis clinic to be held at Bret Harte

A United States Professional Tennis Association pro will be leading a free tennis clinic on Saturday, May 17 from 9 to 11 a.m.

Angella Woods, along with local high school coaches and other tennis teaching professionals, will help direct the 15th annual Youth Tennis Clinic at Bret Harte High School in Angels Camp.

“Many youth from local and surrounding counties have participated in past free clinics,” Woods said in a release. “All players, beginners to advanced, are encouraged to participate. This is a great opportunity for junior players to meet with other aspiring tennis players in the community.”


Swim Cat trio reaches sections

The Sonora Wildcats swim program had three athletes qualify for individual events in the Sac-Joaquin Section Swimming Trials that will be held on Thursday and Friday, May 15-16, at Tokay High School in Lodi.

At the Valley Oak League Championships on Saturday in Lathrop, Wildcats Sammie Slater, Seth Farwell and Dalton Hansten posted qualifying times to advance to the section meet.

Slater, a freshman, qualified for two girls’ events.

Farwell advanced in the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke. Hansten will move on in the 100 breaststroke.

“He dropped almost three seconds to qualify,” said Wildcat head coach John-Jay Verhuel of Hansten. “He has been working so hard all year. It was really great to see.”


Conley headed to D2 Warriors

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Jesse Jones / Union Democrat Calaveras Redskin volleyball star Rebecca Conley (center) signs her National Letter of Intent to play for the Cal State Stanislaus program in front of her parents (front row, left to right) Randy and Lori Conley, and former Calaveras coach Mikki Koepp (back row, at left) and Redskins Athletic Director Mike Koepp on Tuesday, April 29 at Mike Flock Gym in San Andreas.
Rebecca Conley’s volleyball career is about to take off.

The Calavera Redskin senior signed her National Letter of Intent last Tuesday to suit up for the Cal State Stanislaus volleyball program after securing a scholarship from head coach Christina Lore.

“I’m really excited,” Conley said. “It’s really unreal to me. It’s always been one of my dreams to play in college. It still hasn’t set in yet. I have been working so hard to get it. I’m very excited for next year.”


Kiriluk, Menzes surge to Masters

Sonora Wildcat Serge Kiriluk and Bret Harte Bullfrog Mitchell Menzes are both headed to The Masters Golf Tournament at The Reserve at Spanos Park after impressive performances on Monday.

Kiriluk placed seventh while shooting a 77 at the Division IV Tournament at Manteca Golf Course.

“He played well enough to advance, which is a great feat,” said Sonora head coach Steve Lee of Kiriluk. “If you ask him how he played, he will shrug his shoulders and say not very good. But out of 67 golfers, who were some of the better golfers around, he came in seventh.” 


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