So much catching up to do …
College of Idaho getting close: Coyote Nation will see their first football on campus in 37 years Saturday when the school’s “zero-year” team conducts a practice at Symms Field.
This impacts us in Davis how?
Former Aggie QB and assistant coach Mike Moroski is at the helm — just another extension of that UC Davis coaching tree that never seems to stop growing.
The Yotes, as the mascot is known, have 50 players in camp. Practices to date have been conducted at nearby Middleton High. When Moroski’s young men lace ’em up Saturday morning, it will be the first time since 1977 that football cleats have pounded COI campus turf in earnest. Moroski estimates 55 more young men will join the program before the 2014 kickoff.
College of Idaho played its first game in 1905 and is the alma mater of four men who played in the NFL, two Idaho governors and market magnate Joe Albertson (Class of 1929).
Having played under Jim Sochor and Bill Walsh and coached with Bob Biggs, Moroski should quickly bring some more big-time offense to a Pacific Northwest crowded with former Aggie coaches.
3,000 miles away, reunited: Recent Davis High graduates Brenna Mockler and Bailey Gary will be back together on Oct. 12 when Cornell hosts Harvard in Ivy League soccer.
Mockler, a sophomore forward, scored her first collegiate goal two weeks ago — and it was a doozy.
Tied with 7.8 seconds remaining, the former San Juan Spirits club standout (and terrific Blue Devil middle-distance runner) converted a header off a corner kick, giving Cornell the 5-4 win over Albany. The Big Red is 5-2-1.
Gary, a freshman defender, has started every game for the Crimson (3-3-1).
Gary was Mockler’s track and field teammate at Davis while trying tennis and lacrosse for DHS. The versatile Gary also played for San Juan SC.
Speaking of former Blue Devil duos: Anything but slugs, a couple of protégés of former DHS soccer coach Allen Carlson — Sarah Sadler and Toni Darragh — have helped UC Santa Cruz get off to a 6-3-1 start.
Junior Sadler has been strong up front, scoring three goals and posting a couple of assists. Darragh, as usual, is air-tight on defense. Can it be that she’s a senior already?
On Sept. 8, the Blue Devil impact was never more evident than in a 3-2 Banana Slugs victory over visiting Willamette.
First it was a Sadler goal that got the ball rolling. Then Darragh’s late assist provided the game-winning opportunity.
No luck needed for this Irish star: Anna Maria Gilbertson (Class of 2012) traded in her DHS Blue and White for the Green and Gold on the front line at Notre Dame … and the sophomore hasn’t disappointed.
Gilbertson scored five goals as a freshman, earning some spot starts. This year, as the No.8-ranked Irish are off to a 7-1 start, the twinkle-toed forward has two goals. She’s played in all eight games, starting a pair.
A coach is born? In my sports dictionary, when one looks up the word “guts,” you find a simple definition: “Taking responsibility. Working through the tough times. Never giving up.”
Oh, and there’s a picture of Gabe Flory …
Flory (Class of 2010) played linebacker on a couple of 2-8 Blue Devil football squads. He gravitated to Pacific University Oregon, helping former UCD alum Keith Buckley bring that program back from the dormant (the second edition of Pacific football is just four years old).
This fall, Flory’s senior season was to be his final curtain call.
Last week, Flory made a hard, personal decision: a bum knee forced him to hang up the gear.
But Buckley knows a valuable man when he sees one and Flory will stick close to his fellow Boxers (yes, the school’s nickname) and mentor those with whom he’s been playing.
If you ever saw Flory on the gridiron (or know him personally), you know why his picture is my dictionary.
While I Have You Here: The news of Dan Gonzalez stepping down as Davis High basketball coach was sudden and disappointing.
Gonzalez’s 14-year win-loss record on the court wasn’t dazzling: only three playoff appearances, maybe four winning records. But as far as being a man with regard/respect for other people’s kids … well, Gonzalez has few peers.
He’s a terrific mathematics instructor who sent countless students on to bigger and better things in college and the real world — and he’s a guy who’s given everything he has on the court for our Blue Devils.
Athletic legacy at the high school level can get misplaced. Gonzalez wanted wins just as much as the next guy. A quick look at some of the people he brought to the program — Bob Silva, George Sousa, Gary Smith — speaks volumes to his commitment to finding those “W’s.”
One could interpret his current back-to-back winning seasons — a first for Gonzalez — as a sign that he was getting the hang of winning basketball.
It’s for Gonzalez to talk specifically about why he stepped down now, so close to the start of a 15th season. The 2013-14 team is saturated with talent.
There are two questions now …
Who is next up as Blue Devil basketball coach?
And what the heck is going on with — as Enterprise Sports Editor Chris Saur put it — that “Davis High coaching carousel”?
— Bruce Gallaudet is a staff writer for The Davis Enterprise. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-747-8047.