Gunn High sophomore Cadence Lee placed first in the 108-pound FILA Cadet division at the Body Bar Women's National Freestyle Championship this past weekend in Lakeland, Fla.
By accomplishing that, Lee secured a spot on the USA team that will compete at the Canada Cup in July and the 2012 FILA Cadet World Championships in Kazu, Azerbaijan, in August.
Lee is a relative newcomer to freestyle wrestling compared to most of her competitors, and this was only her second national-level tournament. Nevertheless, she breezed through her qualifying bracket by recording four pins -- three of them in under one minute.
In the final best-of-three series, Lee was pitted against a defending Fargo 2011 National champion. Unfamiliar with her opponent's wrestling style, Lee lost the first match, quickly readjusted her strategy to win the second match and split the first two periods of the third match.
In the final period of the final match, Lee persevered to pin her opponent and win the title.
Lee, who competes for the Dave Schultz Wrestling Club-Titans, now looks forward to representing the USA in international competition this summer.
Palo Alto High grad Gracie Marshall, a freshman shortstop at Tufts, singled in the tying and winning runs in the New England Small College Athletic Conference championship game to lift her team into the NCAA Division III playoffs.
Rachel Ersted, Palo Alto High Class of 2010, coxed Cal's Women's Varsity 8+ boat to a gold medal at the Pac-12 Conference Rowing Championships on Sunday at Lake Natoma in Gold River, topping the previously undefeated boat from USC.
Ersted repeated as Varsity 8+ champion, having coxed the Bears' V8+ to last year's gold medal. Cal swept all four races, becoming 2012 Pac-12 champion. The Bears automatically secured a bid to the 2012 NCAA Rowing Championships, scheduled May 25-27 in West Windsor, N.J.
A week earlier at Lake Natoma, two local rowers on the NorCal crew won the Men's Lightweight 4 -- beating 16 other crews -- at the US Rowing Southwest Junior Rowing Championships. There were crews competing from California, Arizona and Utah.
NorCal crew rows out of the Port of Redwood City and draws high school boys and girls from all over the Mid-peninsula -- including Palo Alto, Gunn, Menlo-Atherton highs, Hillview Middle School and JLS.
The Men's Lightweight 4 won its race in a course record 6:42.7 (for 2000 meters). The Lightweight events are limited to men with a maximum weight of 160 pounds. The NorCal team won its heat against five other crews, then won the finals on May 6 while beating teams from Newport Beach, Long Beach, Oakland and Los Gatos.
The win qualifies the Men's Lightweight 4 for the Junior National Championships in Oak Ridge Tenn., June 8-10. Team members include Palo Alto High senior Luke Prioleau and Menlo-Atherton senior Jackson Horwitz. The coach is Allison Frykman of Palo Alto, a former Gunn High and Stanford graduate.
Chris Chavez of Menlo Park and Anne Bersagel of Stanford ran off with the division titles at the Pacific THERx 5K4Play road race on Saturday in Portola Valley. The Grand Prix event was sponsored by the Pacific Association of USA Track & Field.
Chavez, 26, took the men's overall title with a 14:54 clocking over the 3.1-mile course. Kota Reichert, 28, of Menlo Park was third in 15:03.
Bersagel, 29, won the women's overall crown with a 16:45 clocking. Former Stanford track runner Kate Niehaus, 23, was second in 17:00.
In the Masters 40-49 division, Kris Paaso, 41, of Menlo Park clocked 17:22 while finishing second to Richard Bolt, 41, of Mountain View (16:08).
A handful of local players helped the City Beach 16 Black girls' volleyball team win a NorCal Volleyball Association regional championship recently in Sacramento. The victory earned the team enough points to be declared regional champions for 2012.
City Beach defeated its rival from Vision in a dramatic three-set victory to earn the title, coming back from deficits of 10-5 and 13-9 to win 16-14. Keri Gee from Palo Alto is on City beach along with Morgan Dressel of Menlo School and Haylet Sturgeon of Mountain View. The head coach is former Menlo coach Chris Crader while his assistant is Paly head coach Dave Winn.
Sacred Heart Prep senior Erin Sheridan has signed a national letter of intent to continue her career at Santa Clara University.
Sheridan, a co-captain on the Gators' CCS Division II championship squad in the fall, was first team All-West Catholic Athletic League and first team All-Central Coast Section as a senior.
Sheridan played on four straight CCS championship teams and will join former SHP goalie Stephanie Clements on the Broncos.