We're a day away from the start of the wrestling postseason, a 22-day sprint that will culminate with the CIF State Championships on March 1-2 in Rabobank Arena.
Three local leagues hold their championships Friday: The South Yosemite League at Mira Monte, the Southeast Yosemite League at East and the South Sequoia League at Shafter.
The Southwest Yosemite League finals are Saturday at Frontier.
Regular-season champions were Golden Valley in the SYL, Foothill in the SEYL, Wasco in the SSL and Bakersfield in the SWYL. The regular season and league championships are equal in value.
Perhaps more important, each league will send a specified number of wrestlers (usually three or four, depending on the league) to section divisional championships next Friday and Saturday. The Yosemite Divisionals are at Madera South and Sierra/Sequoia Divisionals are at Shafter.
From there, eight Yosemite wrestlers and four Sequoia wrestlers move on to the Central Section Masters, Feb. 23 at Visalia-Mount Whitney. The top nine finishers in each weight at Masters qualify for state -- where Clovis and Bakersfield have comprised the top two team finishers each of the past three years.
Hager still two short
Central Section historian Bob Barnett is human after all -- he called with a slight correction regarding an item The Californian published on Stockdale girls basketball coach Glenn Hager in Wednesday's edition.
Stockdale's victory over Centennial was indeed Hager's 500th career win, but it was only No. 441 in the Central Section. That leaves him two shy of the record held by Karen Wood.
Stockdale plays at Liberty tonight, at Frontier on Tuesday and at home against Bakersfield on Thursday to conclude the regular season. Hager, who is retiring from coaching at the end of the season, could break the record if the Mustangs win all three.
Swimmer Sande commits
Stockdale senior Eric Sande gave a verbal commitment to swim at the University of Minnesota last semester.
Sande, a distance specialist, finished third as a junior in the 200-yard freestyle at the Central Section championships and fourth in the 500-yard freestyle.
Verbal commitments are non-binding; Sande can sign a national letter of intent in April.
Liberty baseball dinner
The annual Texas Hold 'Em poker tournament and tri-tip dinner to benefit Liberty's baseball program will be Feb. 16.
Doors open at 6 p.m. at the Bakersfield Baseball Academy at 7524 Calloway Drive. Tickets are $75.
For more information or to order tickets, contact Beth Morrison at (661) 588-5282 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.