Athletes of the Week

For the week of February 26, 2009

February 25, 2009 

Large Schools

TAYLOR MOBLEY
Turlock wrestling

Mobley, a senior, is back on the mat after not wrestling his junior year. The 189-pounder doesn't seem to have missed a step, either.

He beat Pitman's Gustavo Verver 11-3 in the 189-pound final of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I South Championships last Saturday at Turlock High School. It was a rematch of their final at the Central California Conference championships, also won by Mobley.

Mobley was one of five Turlock wrestlers to win titles.

"We have a pretty tough room," Mobley said.

Mobley wore a different hairstyle as well. In the CCC's, his close-shorn hair was colored in leopard spots. Last week, it was black.

"My mom's a hairstylist," Mobley said. "I might do something different each week up to state."

— WILL DeBOARD

PORSHA GRAYSON
Golden Valley basketball

The playoffs looked more like a dream than a reality with two weeks remaining in the regular season, but that was before Grayson found her stroke and GV put together a four-game winning streak to earn the No. 14 seed in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I tournament.

The senior guard averaged 22.5 points and five rebounds during that four-game streak.

In the final week of the regular season, she had 19 points and three rebounds in a 48-38 win over Pitman and then had a season-high 28 points and four rebounds in a playoff-clinching, 57-43 win over Atwater.

Grayson averaged 18.5 points, hitting 48 percent of her 2-point field goals and 37 percent of her 3-pointers, and 2.3 steals per game. She also scored in double figures in 26 of the Cougars' 28 games, scoring 24 points or more six times.

Small Schools

RYAN MACKEY
Ripon wrestling

With as often as Mackey has faced Escalon's Charlie McDonald, it was no wonder that both Trans-Valley League wrestlers were wary during the first three rounds of their final at the Sac-Joaquin Section Division V Meet.

It was the sixth time in two years the 171-pound wrestlers met, and after Mackey captured a 3-1 overtime win to earn a section crown, the duo are now 3-3 with perhaps another meeting at this week's Masters tourney.

"We go back and forth, with me beating Charlie and Charlie beating me," said Mackey, who lost to McDonald at the Trans-Valley League Meet the previous week. "It's a great rivalry."

The title capped a strong weekend by Mackey, who had pinned two of his three foes for a berth in the final. Today he'll wrestle his first match at the Section Meet at the University of the Pacific.

MEGAN PALMER
Big Valley Christian basketball

Palmer's season came to a close with Tuesday's loss in the Lions' 67-17 loss to top-seeded Bradshaw Christian in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division V playoffs, but the 5-foot-9-inch junior swing player expects the Lions to be playing deeper into the postseason next year.

Palmer was the most experienced player on the roster, surrounded by eight freshman and three sophomores. She handled the leadership role well, averaging 12.1 points per game and scoring in double figures in nine of the Lions' final 10 regular-season games.

That included 22 points — her second-highest total of the season, behind a 28-point outing — to lead the Lions past Millennium 41-36. Palmer then scored 10 points in a 39-33 win over Brookside Christian, clinching Big Valley's playoff berth.

Palmer and her young teammates won eight of their final 10 games to finish .500 in league play.

— RICHARD T. ESTRADA

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