Stanford women's basketball coach addresses local Rotary Club


Steve Pomeroy/Special to the Town Crier
Stanford University women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer speaks at a Rotary Club of Los Altos meeting last month.

In college sports, the coach is usually the constant and the student-athletes are the variable, as players come and go each academic year.

Under those circumstances, Stanford University’s longtime women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer has created an environment in which her players thrive and her team competes for the national title nearly every season.

Sierra Canyon clamps down on Panthers


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pinewood’s Annika Decker drives on Salesian’s Angel Jackson in the NorCal Open Division final. Decker scored a team- and career-high 17 points in Saturday’s state final loss to Sierra Canyon.

What Pinewood School achieved this season – making it to the state Open Division girls basketball championship game for the second straight year – is unprecedented.

While the Panthers will surely look back at this feat with pride one day, it seemed the furthest thing from their minds as they faced the media a few minutes after Saturday’s 69-51 loss to Sierra Canyon in the state final at Sacramento’s Golden 1 Center.

McGraw brothers lead Nueva hoops team to its best season


Courtesy of the McGraw family
Nueva School’s Connor McGraw, left, and older brother Kyle of Los Altos Hills run toward the front court.

For Los Altos Hills residents Kyle and Connor McGraw, Nueva School’s 2018-19 boys basketball season wasn’t just special because their team had its most successful campaign in program history. It also provided the brothers the rare opportunity to play together.

“It was great playing with him,” Kyle said of Connor. “It was one of the first times; I usually just get to practice with him.”

Payback for Panthers


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pinewood’s Klara Astrom drives to the basket against St. Mary’s last week in the Northern California playoffs.

Minutes after the Pinewood School girls basketball team knocked off host Carondelet 51-39 in the Northern California Open Division semifinals, the Panthers’ celebration turned to unmitigated elation. They had just received news that Salesian upset Mitty in Saturday’s other semifinal game.

“The girls were very excited about it,” said Pinewood coach Doc Scheppler, whose team fell to the top-seeded Monarchs 72-51 in the Central Coast Section final two weeks ago. “Mitty is a power, and they present more difficulties for us than Salesian.”


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