Corey Costelloe mug

Corey Costelloe

I’ll keep it short this week because there are a pair of Tehachapi High School teams that have pretty much done all the talking on the field and courts this season. They are on the cusp of greatness and their performances speak as much. They don’t necessarily need us “talking heads” to tell their story, but it doesn’t hurt to have someone in their corner reaffirming their accomplishments.

I’m talking about Warrior boy’s soccer and girl’s basketball, two sports that have either already locked up a historic league title or on the verge of doing so.

On the soccer pitch (yes, for those that don’t follow the game that’s what the field is called), the Warriors sit atop the South Yosemite League standings after posting a 6-1-1 record thus far. They can lock up their first SYL title this week with wins at Ridgeview and a home victory over West.

Tehachapi posted a monster week last week, defeating Ridgeview in a makeup game 2-1, dismantling Bakersfield Christian 6-0 and then coming from behind to earn a 2-2 draw against historical soccer powerhouse Golden Valley. I might be mistaken because the records of Tehachapi soccer are sparse, but this could be the first-ever league title for a program that is young compared to the others at THS. The last few seasons we’ve certainly seen improvement, but this is next level if the Warriors in fact pull it off.

Girl’s basketball wrapped up the SYL title, winning three games in four days last week. It’s the second SYL championship in as many seasons for Tehachapi but the first outright title after sharing the top spot a season ago. It’s a big deal, but as expected it’s not the end goal for THS. After last season’s CIF Division II semifinal appearance and first-ever CIF state playoff win, the bar was set high by the team and coaches themselves in 2020. They too sit on the verge of something great, but it will be on them to prove it in the weeks to come.

When you stand in the gym at Tehachapi High and marvel at the league championship banners, it’s not lost on you how much Tehachapi was used to winning over the years. While the last CIF championship in any team sport seems like ages ago, I wish to point out that there has been a turn of the tide for at least a couple of sports and that winning is infectious. To the other sports on campus and the community at large, while our competition level has increased, the value of these championships becomes even greater.

Maybe it is going to take a couple of teams that haven’t necessarily been in the historic spotlight in Tehachapi to reset the course of this program and the community support. I can’t write them into success. They know that our support is a part of the formula, but in the end history will remember them based on their performances in competition and what they earn in the next several weeks.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what has made champions in Tehachapi past, and in the coming weeks those gritty all-out performances might be making a few more.

Corey Costelloe has covered NCAA, professional and local sports for more than 20 years as a reporter and broadcaster. A THS graduate, he now resides in Tehachapi. He can be reached at corey.costelloe@gmail.com. The opinions expressed are his own.