Blue Devils

Former DHS stars honored before girls beat Natomas

By From page B1 | December 01, 2011

Former DHS basketball star Denise Curry, middle, admires a framed jersey that was donated to Davis High School in her honor by former coach George Fleming, left. Current Blue Devil coach Karen Foster holds the jersey on Wednesday night at The Cage, where former players and coaches from a pair of Davis section championship teams from the mid-1970s, were honored. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

Ten players and two coaches from a pair of Davis High girls basketball section championship teams were honored Wednesday night at The Cage before the official tip-off of the Blue Devils’ 2011-12 season.

From 1975 to 1977, these “Devilettes” captured back-to-back Sac-Joaquin Section titles — the first two times the CIF offered banners for girls — and posted a 71-4 record. The first team was guided by coach Barbara Iten, and George Fleming was at the helm for the second banner season. Both were on hand Wednesday.

“It was great to see them all again,” said Iten, who also is a UC Davis Hall of Fame player. “I’ve had some contact with some but not much. (Wednesday), it was ‘Oh my gosh, I’d recognize you anywhere.’ ”

Past players were announced and then made their way across center court, taking high- and low-fives from current DHS varsity and junior varsity girls.

Leading the charge for the alumni were Denise Gualco, Heidi Pfanner Adamski, Sue Towne Mortensen, Cindy McClanahan, Cindy Stein Dailey, Donna Prato, Cathy Cameron Cano, Marcy Place, Myrna Vasquez and Denise Curry.

Players who were unable to attend were Cathy Speck, Julie Bowin, Carol Seely, Marcia Gagnon, Carol Brattin, Robin Reynolds, Cassie Guerrero, Margaret Marr, Rita Crampton, Therese Cardinet, Colette Cardinet and the late Jan Van Winkle.

Curry went on to play at UCLA, where she holds the all-time scoring record for women or men. She also won an Olympic Gold medal during her career as one of the most successful women’s basketball players ever.

“When I first started coaching them, my idea was to do the best I could with the kids I had,” Iten said. “I soon realized that I had some really talented players.”

The former players and coaches sat behind the DHS bench as the Blue Devils rallied to top Natomas 53-46 in their season opener.

“It was great to see them come back and get the win,” Iten said. “Basketball is basketball. It’s fun to watch.”

Kim Orendor

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