CHICO, Calif. – Now that the school year is over, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the success of our local high school teams.
It was the first year back to normal after the shortened Covid-19 season. Teams played full seasons and were crowned state and section champions.
Beginning in NorCal football lore, Pleasant Valley won the 50th Almond Bowl with a 27-14 win over Chico. Enterprise defeated Shasta 26-8 for its first River Bowl title since 2014.
Fast forward to the playoffs, Chico ended his 31-year drought for the Division title with a 27-23 win over Foothill. The Panthers clawed their way back to winning after trailing for the first three quarters. Chico’s magical season ended with a 31-7 loss to Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep in the State Playoffs at Kezar Stadium. Fall River defeated Morro Bay 43-13 in the Division 7-AA State Championship game. The Bulldogs were the first Shasta County team to win a state title.
West Valley, Orland and University Prep volleyball all advanced to the second round of the state playoffs. Uprep went all the way, beating Exeter in five sets to win their first state championship in program history.
In Cross Country, the girls from Chico and the boys from Pleasant Valley ran away with section titles. Della and Iresh Molina finished first and second for girls. Chico’s Mario Giannini won the boys’ race, while PV’s Tryon Jardin and Renton McGregor took second and third place. All five runners are committed to racing at the next level.
The boys and girls of Chico also won a sectional championship.
There was much to rejoice in winter sports! Pleasant Valley, Oroville and Las Plumas Cheer were crowned national champions. The Vikings also won the first-ever CIF Northern Section Traditional Cheer title.
In soccer, the Chico Girls captured the Division III NorCal Championship with a 4-3 victory over Marin Academy in penalty kicks. It was his second regional title in three years. Senior captain Priscilla Ward scored the winning goal. She had a Chico High record for most goals scored in a single season her senior year with 61.
It’s hard to forget the success of our basketball teams. The Pleasant Valley girls won a section title behind four freshmen. The Vikings were then upset by Evergreen Valley in the first round of the playoffs. The boys from Durham, Uprep and PV have also won section trophies. The Vikings capped it all off with a thrilling win to secure their second state title in four years. They rallied from a 10-0 deficit to beat Venice 57-53 at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento.
Pleasant Valley dominated spring sports. He won section titles in baseball, softball, men’s tennis, men’s golf and track and field.
Durham Baseball made history by winning its first Division title since 2012. The Trojans were also one of two North Division teams to advance to the second round of the newly created NorCal Championships.
Throughout the year, dozens of athletes were recognized by signing letters of intent to compete at the next level.
Congratulations to our North Section athletes and teams for their great seasons!