STATE RANKINGS . . . Palo Alto High has been playing baseball since 1897, a period of 114 years. During that time the Vikings have won five section titles and one unofficial state title. Now, they have something else to add to that history. For the first time in program history, Palo Alto has been ranked No. 1 in the state. That honor arrived late last week when Cal-Hi Sports made the Vikings its No. 1 team in Division II. Palo Alto finished off a 28-9 season, the second-most victories in school history, with a Central Coast Section Division I title following a 5-4 victory over San Benito last month. Paly also bounced perennial favorite Mitty in the semifinals. Palo Alto did need some help to get the No. 1 ranking. Former No. 1 Alameda and No. 2 Clayton Valley both lost to unranked Campolindo in the North Coast Section playoffs and Helix beat No. 3 La Costa Canyon in the San Diego Section. That opened the door for the Vikings. Paly was the state team of the year in baseball in 1899, 1904 and 1908. This season's CCS title was the team's first. The Vikings previously won four NCS crowns, the last one coming in 1927. The No. 1 ranking in Division I also moved the Vikings to No. 14 in the final state top 25 rankings. Buchanan of Clovis (30-2) was the No. 1 overall team and No. 1 in Division I. Paly was the No. 2-ranked Northern California team, trailing only No. 10 James Logan of Union City (24-4), and only one of four Bay Area teams in the final top 25. The Vikings finished ahead of No. 15 Mitty (26-6) and No. 17 St. Francis (25-6). In the Division IV final rankings, five-time CCS champ Menlo School (26-5) earned the No. 2 spot behind No. 1 Escalon (28-3). Several of the Escalon players were on the school's football team that won the Division III state bowl title in December.
ON THE COURT . . . Men and women at least 18 years of age who want the chance to earn free tickets to one of the premier professional women's tennis tournaments on the West Coast, can become a volunteer at the Bank of the West Classic, July 23-31 at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium at Stanford University. Volunteer positions are currently available in several areas including transportation, ushers, guest services, hospitality, and tournament administration. For more information please go to www.bankofthewestclassic.com and click on "Volunteers" to apply online. Volunteers will receive complimentary tickets to the tournament, a parking pass, and an official tournament shirt. They will be asked to work a minimum of four shifts during the event in order to qualify for these tournament benefits.
COACHING CORNER . . . Palo Alto Knights Youth Football is seeking experienced head and assistant football coaches for the 2011 season. Contact: Mike Piha 269-6100 or firstname.lastname@example.org. . . . Sacred Heart Prep is seeking frosh-soph and freshman football coaches as well as a girls' junior varsity volleyball coach for next season. All interested applicants should contact SHP Athletic Director Frank Rodriguez via email at email@example.com or by phone at (650) 473-4031 . . . Menlo-Atherton High School is looking for an assistant volleyball coach. Anyone interested should contact Mary Podesta at firstname.lastname@example.org.