Palo Alto Weekly

Sports - January 13, 2012

Sports Shorts

TOP RECRUIT . . . Stanford may have lost out to Oklahoma State in the Fiesta Bowl last week, but the Cardinal football team evened the score by recruiting away Oklahoma prep star Barry J. Sanders, son of NFL Hall of Famer Barry Sanders. The younger Sanders announced his decision to attend Stanford over Oklahoma State following the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Saturday in San Antonio, Texas. Sanders' father is an Oklahoma State grad and 1988 Heisman Trophy winner. He stood near his son and other family members when Barry J. announced his decision to go to Stanford on national television. The 5-foot-11, 195-pound Sanders is the 15th-best prospect nationally, regardless of position, according to MaxPreps. He rushed for 1,343 yards (9.5 ypg) and scored 27 touchdowns this past season in leading the Heritage Hall Chargers to the Class 3A semifinals. He was rated the No. 8 running back in the country, according to the Bootleg.com. In addition to Oklahoma State, Sanders turned down Florida State and Alabama. National Signing Day is Feb. 1 and verbal commitments are not binding.

CARDINAL CORNER . . . Stanford freshman Kristina Vaculik, who is taking a year off school to train with the Canadian Olympic women's gymnastics team, helped Canada earn a spot in the 2012 London Games on Wednesday in an Olympic Qualifying Test Event. Canada was among eight countries competing for the final four team spots in the last-chance opportunity. Vaculik is one Canada's top gymnasts. She won four of five possible individual titles at the 2010 Canadian national championships and earned her second national all-around title, as well as gold medals on the beam, bars and vault . . . Stanford sophomore Carly Wopat earned first team All-American recognition from Volleyball Magazine, it was announced Wednesday. Wopat, a middle blocker, finished second in the nation, and led the Pac-12, with 1.63 blocks per set. She also finished third in the conference with a .383 hitting percentage. An AVCA All-Pacific Region and an All-Pac-12 Conference pick, Wopat was second, to Rachel Williamson, with 3.16 kills and 4.08 points per set for the Cardinal. Wopat earned her first career honors from Volleyball Magazine. She was also named an honorable mention All-American by the AVCA last month.

COACHING CORNER . . . The Palo Alto Babe Ruth baseball program has openings for head coaches and team managers for the spring 2012 season. Tryouts will be in late January 2012. Those interested should contact the league at pabr.baseball@gmail.com. For more details, go to www.pababeruth.org.

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