Speaking of Vanden, the boys’ basketball team managed to win the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship before COVID struck. It was Vanden’s first section crown since 1996. The Vikings defeated Central Catholic, 57-41, at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento.
The top-seeded Vikings (26-6) did not have an easy road in the postseason. Vanden had to win its first three games on the road because of sanctions handed down by the section due to an incident with an official after a December tournament game against Gregori in Modesto.
Vanden’s Takai Emerson-Hardy had five blocks, nine rebounds, a steal and a team-high 14 points in the win and earned The Reporter’s Athlete of the Week honor for his efforts.