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What a long, strange trip
March 11, 2014, 05:00 AM By Nathan Mollat Daily Journal

Holy. Moly. What a whirlwind it has been for the last three weeks. If you see me and wonder about the bags under my eyes, notice I can’t maintain a train of thought and suddenly burst out in maniacal laughter (all of which have happened over the last three weeks), I beg your pardon.

Today marks my 23rd straight day of work without a day off — that includes the last three Sundays at the height of the CCS playoffs. Most of those days have averaged about 10 hours out in the field and in the office, with a couple of 12-hour shifts and one 13-hour affair.

All of this coincided with the beginning of the postseason for the winter sports season. The Peninsula Athletic League and West Catholic Athletic League tournaments both started the week of Feb. 17 and the journey hadn’t hit a lull until this past Saturday with eight Central Coast Section championship games involving San Mateo County teams.

When this odyssey first began, The Sochi Olympics were in full swing and University of Missouri linebacker Michael Sam announced he was gay and would hopefully be the first openly gay football player in the NFL.

Now, Terry Bernal has replaced Julio Lara as my right-hand man, the NBA and NHL seasons are gearing up for their stretch run to the playoffs and Major League Baseball will take its act Down Under with a pair of games — that count — beginning in about two weeks.

Just in doing some tabulation and guesstimating, here are some numbers you might find entertaining: I figure I drove about 1,800 miles over the past 23 days. Factor out my commute to and from the office at about 85 miles roundtrip, multiply by 23 ... ah, I’m sick of doing math. Let’s just say, and this is the truth, I drove 750 miles last week alone.

All that driving, of course, means gas and I estimate I’ve probably filled my tank nine times since Feb. 18 — roughly three times a week.

Coming into today, I’ve written at least 50 articles for the Daily Journal since Feb. 18, including four stories for last weekend’s edition alone, as we previewed all eight of the CCS championships taking place Saturday. There were also the four CCS soccer games March 1 at Burlingame High School.

Despite all that, you know what the hardest thing to do is? Finding time to take a day off. Just because the bulk of the winter season is over, the games don’t stop. The spring season has snuck up on me and is already in full swing. Plus, there are the Northern California tournament basketball games left to play.

No rest for the weary I suppose.

***

The 2013-14 basketball season came to wrap for all but a handful of teams in the state, which qualified for the Northern and Southern California tournaments on the way to the state championship game.

Six San Mateo County teams are still in the mix for a state title appearance: on the boys’ side, Menlo-Atherton (Division I), Serra (Division II), Aragon (Division III), Burlingame (Division III), Half Moon Bay (Division IV) and Sacred Heart Prep (Division IV) all secured spots in the Nor Cal tournament, as did the Menlo School girls’ squad (Division IV).

Burlingame, Half Moon Bay and Serra, which all played in the Open Division in CCS, were moved into their division of enrollment for the Nor Cal tournament.

Menlo-Atherton (18-9) will be the only local team that doesn’t get a home game. As runner-up in the CCS tournament, the Bears, as the No. 11 seed, will be on the road Wednesday at No. 6 Rodriguez-Fairfield.

Serra, the CCS runner-up, was seeded No. 4 in the Division II tournament and will have a first-round bye. Saturday, the Padres (21-8) will host the winner of No. 5 Montgomery-Santa Rosa and No. 12 Del Oro-Loomis, the school that denied the Serra football team a spot in the state championship game.

Division III is the most loaded bracket with CCS teams. No. 1 Sacred Heart Cathedral and No. 3 Riordan join No. 4 Burlingame and No. 7 Aragon, with Aragon being the only one of the four to win a CCS championship. SHC, Riordan and Burlingame all came up short of the Open Division title.

Both Aragon and Burlingame will get home games. The Dons (20-9) open against No. 10 Vanden (19-11) at 7 p.m. Wednesday, while Burlingame (26-4) gets a first-round bye and will host Saturday the winner of No. 5 Fairfield and No. 12 Miramonte.

CCS Division IV winner Sacred Heart Prep (20-7) wasn’t given a whole lot of love at the seeding meeting, getting the No. 7 seed, but the Gators will host a first-round game at 7 p.m. Wednesday against No. 10 Colfax (17-13).

Half Moon Bay (24-5), received the No. 3 seed and will host No. 14 Marshall-SF (17-12) at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

The Menlo School girls (18-11) earned the No. 8 seed in the Division IV bracket and, by virtue of winning the CCS title, will host No. 9 Cardinal Newman-Santa Rosa (23-7) Wednesday at 7 p.m.

Nathan Mollat can be reached by phone: 344-5200 ext. 117 or by email: nathan@smdailyjournal.com. You follow him on Twitter@CheckkThissOutt.

 

 

Tags: division, burlingame, games, tournament, first, about,


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