McCollum, Butcher go dancin’ |

McCollum, Butcher go dancin’

By Steve Yingling

Tribune sports editor

Chico State’s Travis McCollum and Andy Butcher played like it was the final game of their collegiate careers on Saturday night in Los Angeles

The South Tahoe High graduates each scored in double figures, helping the Wildcats defeat Cal State Los Angeles 72-62.

The victory allowed Chico State (18-9) to convince the NCAA Division II men’s basketball tournament organizers to invite them to the 64-team dance for the second straight year.

Chico State will play Hawaii-Hilo (24-3) on Saturday.

Butcher scored 12 points and McCollum 11.

McCollum hit four of his five attempts and contributed three assists and two steals.

Butcher made four of seven tries from the three-point arc and made four steals. Butcher had seven points, a steal and two rebounds in an 80-63 loss at Cal State Bakersfield on Friday.

Orlich’s Eagles win section

Tom Orlich won nine Northern Nevada regional titles while coaching at South Tahoe High. The titles are continuing to flow at Clovis West near Fresno.

Orlich guided Clovis West to its eighth California Interscholastic Federation Central Section boys’ basketball title in nine years on Saturday night. Clovis West defeated rival Clovis 60-53 to cut down the nets at Selland Arena.

”We started running,” Clovis West coach Tom Orlich told the Fresno Bee. ”Our intensity picked up and we got them frustrated. We just picked up our man-to-man pressure.”

Both teams advanced to this week’s CIF Southern Section state tournament. Orlich’s Golden Eagles (26-5) enter the 10-team tournament as the third seed. They will play host to Aliso Niguel (28-3) on Tuesday. Westchester (21-3) of Los Angeles and Etiwanda (30-1) are the top two seeds.

No NFL Europe for Dusty

Former Whittell High soccer star Dusty Apocotos wasn’t among the eight placekickers assigned for the upcoming NFL Europe season.

Apocotos, who was signed by the New Orleans Saints as a free agent last month, competed in a three-day camp with other placekickers and punters last weekend in Tampa, Fla.

In an interview last month, the former UC Davis all-star kicker thought he needed to make an NFL Europe team to keep his spot with the Saints. Apocotos was nursing a hip flexor injury prior to the tryouts.

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