Modestly, Dublin High boys basketball coach Tom Costello says he's happy his team is still playing.
He's also thrilled to be making history.
Dublin has eclipsed the school record with 24 wins this season. Plus, the Gaels earned the program's first league title in 40 years with a dominating run in the Diablo Foothill Athletic League.
But there's plenty of work to be done.
The No. 1 seed in the Northern California Division II playoffs, Dublin (24-6) will host either El Camino or Rocklin in the quarterfinals at 7 p.m. on March 9. The Gaels fell to Newark Memorial 74-60 in the North Coast Section Division II championship game on March 1.
Though the Gaels were favored to win the league championship, they weren't clear on the history of the deal until a local historian stopped by during an early-season practice at the school's old gym, the one with all the banners.
Dublin mayor Tim Sbranti, a fixture on campus who coaches Dublin's boys tennis team, helped basketball coach Tom Costello fill in the blanks.
"He said, 'You know Dublin hasn't won a title in 40 years,'" recalled Costello of the conversation. "I was like, 'No, no way.' Then we looked up at the banners. He said, 'Have you seen one after the one that says 1972-73?' I was, like, 'Holy cow. Guys, I just turned 40.' That was when I was born,' and they go, 'Man, that's old.'"
Back in 1973, coach Roger Dabney guided Dublin to an East Bay Athletic League title for the second straight year. That Dublin team featured Norm Bumgarner, a holdover from the 1972 squad that boasted the Roberson twins, Larry and Lester, who went on to play football at Chabot College and Hawaii.
Dabney is a local legend and a former Foothill principal. The Falcons compete on Roger Dabney Memorial Field, and a high school scholarship bears his name.
Trivial tidbits aside, Tom Costello is proud that his athletic squad, which boasts 11 seniors, became the program's first NCS finalist since the 2007-2008 team fell to Campolindo in the Division III championship game.
JoJo McGlaston, who has orally committed to Utah State, leads the Gaels. The team's sixth-man, 6-foot-5 Spencer Hollie, has signed to play football at SMU, and Jamir Andrews is weighing his basketball options.
There weren't many softies on the Gaels' schedule outside of the DFAL. Costello says five of the team's six losses have come against teams selected to the NorCal Open Division.
WRESTLING STATEMENT: Granada's three-sport athlete Kyle Campiotti had a very respectable 3-2 record at the California Interscholastic Federation Wrestling championships last week in Bakersfield, with two closes losses. Not a bad haul for a guy who made the first-team All-East Bay Athletic League football team and is currently vying for time at second base on the Matadors baseball team.
Granada baseball coach Corrigan Willis, whose team fell to De La Salle in the North Coast Section Division I semifinals last year, raves about Campiotti, the competitor.
"He's a special kind of kid," Willis said. "He's one of those guys that's obviously a very good athlete, a great athlete, competing in multiple facets, wrestling, football and baseball. What he brings to the table for us is just experience, just being a competitor. You can't replace that kind of competition, being one of the main guys on the football team and going to state for wrestling."