As the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs prepare for their championship game this Sunday, Feb. 2, some Escalon student athletes are already enjoying the perks of being a football champion, albeit a Sac-Joaquin Section Champion. As of this past Monday, they even have their own championship milk to pour on their super bowls of cereal this Sunday.
The California Interscholastic Federation’s Sac-Joaquin Section’s six football champions – including the eventual Division 4-A State Champion Cougars – are being recognized on the latest set of Crystal Creamery’s commemorative milk cartons. Out in time for the Super Bowl, the new cartons arrived in local grocery and convenience stores from Bakersfield to the Oregon border this week.
“Crystal Creamery is proud to recognize these football champions on our commemorative cartons for achieving the highest honor in their sport,” said Brian Carden, Crystal Creamery’s Senior Director of Sales. “With these cartons, Crystal Creamery wants to provide a fun, lasting memory of a very special moment for each of the student athletes, their coaches and their families.”
In 2019, Modesto-based and family-owned, Crystal Creamery, expanded its sponsorship of the CIF to include the Central and North Coast Sections in addition to the Sac-Joaquin Section which it has sponsored since 2012. Crystal Creamery recognizes outstanding student athletes in both boys’ and girls’ sports including Section and State Champions, academic team champions, Sac-Joaquin Section’s scholarship winners and the Section’s Hall of Fame inductees on milk cartons.
“We greatly appreciate Crystal Creamery’s sponsorship of the Sac-Joaquin Section. The cartons have become part of the tradition of winning a Section Championship,” said Mike Garrison, Commissioner of the Sac-Joaquin Section. “It is a special trophy for these schools and teams to add to the trophy case.”
The Sac-Joaquin Section Football Champions being honored on these commemorative cartons are Oak Ridge High School (Division I), Elk Grove High School (Division II), Manteca High School (Division III), Sierra High School (Division IV), Ripon High School (Division V), and Escalon High School (Division VI).
Escalon went on from the Section championship to win the NorCal title and the State title, its second state crown in school history. The team was also recently recognized at a meeting of the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors for the state championship and the team itself had its family banquet on Sunday, Jan. 26 at Escalon High School. The afternoon included the catered dinner, the presentation of special awards and accolades for the players, a highlight film and remarks from coaches.
Head coach Andrew Beam said the football Cougars were truly blessed this year, with outstanding team moms, a community that got behind them and players that believed in each other and persevered to get to the ultimate goal, bringing home the State Championship trophy.
Times Editor Marg Jackson contributed to this story.