Every season, the California Interscholastic Federation and the Central Coast Section awards selects coaches for their Sports Honor awards.
And for the 2012-13 winter season, the Peninsula Athletic League is well represented.
Mills boys' basketball coach Rick Hanson and Sequoia girls' basketball coach Steve Picchi were two of the four coaches chosen by the CIF-CCS.
The Central Coast Section Honor Coach Award is presented to those coaches who their colleagues believe have made outstanding contributions to that sport at their school, within their league, in the community and to the CCS.
"It's a very nice award," Hanson said as he prepares the Vikings to a Division III showdown with No. 6 Aptos Saturday afternoon at St. Ignatius High School in San Francisco. "I think it means a lot of the players I've coached over the years have done well and have gone on and represented Mills well. I think it reflects that in a lot of ways. I'm very happy for Mills High School, to be at Mills for the number of years that I have and to be recognized."
Hanson has been the head coach at Mills since 2003. Prior to that, he was the boys varsity coach at Aragon High School for three years and an assistant basketball coach at Mills for 10 seasons.
"Rick clearly communicates the importance of playing to the fullest potential without relaying a win at all costs mentality," said Mills Principal Paul Belzer via CCS press release. "Rick exemplifies what I think is most important about high school athletics; a commitment to excellence through consistent effort, teamwork and strategy."
Added Mills athletic director Tim Keller via the same release: "Rick has a work ethic that is unquestionable. Not only does he know the game itself, he demonstrates the ability to teach the required skills that allow teams to win. He has displayed the moral character and commitment necessary to lead any high school basketball program. Rick is a dedicated mentor who leads others by setting examples and assisting other coaches on staff to make tough decisions. I am always confident that Rick will produce a team that will have great sportsmanship as well as show success on and off the court."
In his tenure as head coach, Hanson has led the Vikings to over 155 wins and a .600 winning percentage. Mills is 9-8 under his watch in the CCS playoffs with a couple of semifinal appearances. He said that 10 years in, he still finds multiple sources of inspiration.
"Certainly the kids that I'm currently coaching," Hanson said. "But I also think the basketball alumni at Mills is very important to me and was very important to coach Thompson, who was my mentor, not only in basketball but in many ways, in life. And that was always impressed up on, that coach Thompson and even coach Smith before him, took great care of keeping the alumni on current news and if there's a chance for an alumni that was prominent in a certain field of work, that we sometimes we try to align them with a current player, help them out a little bit and maybe give them some advice they can look forward to