ALUMNI NOTEBOOK: Local alums help Sierra to another tourney title |

ALUMNI NOTEBOOK: Local alums help Sierra to another tourney title

Aycee Willis
Courtesy of Sierra College Athletics |

Aycee Willis, Alyssa Pulkinghorn and the rest of the women’s basketball team at Sierra College continued their impressive start to the 2017-18 season with yet another tourney championship.

The two freshmen guards and the Wolverines extended their winning streak to 12 games after dominating at the Golden Gate Classic over the weekend.

Sierra College knocked off Laney College (80-60) and Los Angeles Valley College (87-66) before topping City College of San Francisco (83-68) in the championship game.

Willis, a 2017 Nevada Union graduate, is averaging 8.9 points per game and is shooting 42.9 percent from 3-point range in her freshmen season with the Wolverines.

Willis didn’t play in her senior year at Nevada Union, but was an All-Sierra Foothill First Team selection in her sophomore season when she helped the Lady Miners reach the playoffs.

Pulkinghorn, a 2017 Bear River graduate, is averaging 3.5 points per game in her first season with Sierra.

During Pulkinghorn’s time at Bear River she was an All-Pioneer Valley League First Team Selection as a senior and led the Lady Bruins to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-IV semifinals and a spot in the NorCal tourney.

Sierra College has now won four straight tournaments and is 12-0 on the season. The Wolverines compete in the California Community College Athletic Association’s Big 8 Conference.


David O’Brien, a 2016 Bear River graduate, and the Shasta College Knights went 1-2 last week with a win over El Camino College and losses to Cerritos College and Pasadena City College.

O’Brien, a sophomore guard, scored six points and grabbed four rebounds in the win over El Camino. He tallied six points in the loss to Pasadena and notched three points in the loss to Cerritos.

Shasta (8-7) plays in the CCCAA’s Golden Valley Conference.


Tanner Vallejo, a 2013 Nevada Union graduate, and the Buffalo Bills improved their playoff chances with a 24-16 victory over the Miami Dolphins Sunday.

Vallejo, a linebacker, played on special teams in the win and tallied one solo tackle.

The 6-foot, 1-inch, 228-pound rookie has played in 13 of the Bills’ 14 games this season and has three tackles on the year.

Vallejo was drafted by the Bills in the sixth round of the 2017 NFL Draft.


Will Sumner, a 2014 Nevada Union graduate, had a strong showing at the Reno Tournament of Champions, going 4-2 at the one-day tourney Sunday.

Sumner, a 184-pound junior who competes for Utah Valley University, lost his match before reeling off four straight victories. Sumner suffered an injury in the consolation semifinals and had to pull out due to injury, falling just one win short of a podium finish.

Utah Valley University is a Division I school that competes in the Big 12.

Have we missed anyone? If you know of a college or professional athlete with local ties, email or call 530-477-4232.

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