WESTON RANCH - Matt Barber's mound appearances all season have been short, be it as a starter or a reliever.
Justin Dias insisted on pitching East Union's sophomore baseball game against Sierra Tuesday at Agostini Field, and he came through.
SACRAMENTO - What doesn't this kid do well?
A sullen overcast sagged over Sierra High Saturday as the league's elite did battle in the Timberwolves' chlorine, but the mood around the pool was anything but dreary at the Valley Oak League Championships.
The ever-changing Valley Oak League will undergo another transformation, and Ripon Christian will leave behind familiar foes the Trans Valley League come 2010 after the Sac-Joaquin Section Board of Managers approved a realignment proposal Wednesday at Elkhorn Country Club in Stockton.
The postseason has arrived, and with it comes another opportunity for the Valley Oak League's best to shine and a chance for a few unheralded newcomers to make a name for themselves.
May Day brought plenty of rain to the Manteca area Friday afternoon and it washed away the entirety of the local high school sports schedule.
Sierra High shook off a lifeless start Thursday at home to rally from a three-run deficit and earn a 6-4 win over Central Valley.
Manteca's four seniors exited the field with two minutes remaining to much-deserved applause.
WESTON RANCH - Nicole Vanni hit the half-century mark with two more goals, and Sierra wrapped up a dominating run through the Valley Oak League season with an 8-0 win over Weston Ranch Thursday.
CERES - With a second straight Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV postseason appearance no longer a possibility, East Union still showed some fight in nearly overcoming a six-run deficit but fell 13-12 to Ceres Thursday in eight innings.
SONORA - Either heads or tails will determine Manteca's postseason destiny.
East Union freshman softball coach Ron Kackley had never beaten Tracy High.
A common gripe among boat owners is the dependability of their engines.
As if the gridlock atop the Valley Oak League standings could get any more perplexing, Sierra High claimed a huge piece of the potential playoff pie Wednesday night with a 1-0 upset of first-place East Union at Northgate Park.
It was a three-person race for low-medalist honors at Manteca Park Golf Course on Wednesday, where cross-town opponents Manteca and Sierra met for a pivotal Valley Oak League dual match.
Ripon dominated visiting Lodi in a three-game sweep (25-10, 25-14, 25-17) Wednesday.
The Manteca High girls cross country team has some work to do if it wants to keep its spot on the Valley Oak League throne.
RIPON - Despite an aggressive first half, Ripon Christian found itself down by a goal at halftime against visiting Le Grand, the defending Southern League champion.
East Union's girls tennis team relied on its depth to upend visiting Kimball on Tuesday.
The Manteca High girls golf team overcame a strong effort form Oakdale's Dylanie Donahue in a 287-297 victory at Manteca Park Golf Course on Tuesday.
No other Manteca-area volleyball team had a busier pre-league schedule than East Union, a young squad that second-year head coach Rich Posz hopes gained some valuable experience in the last three weeks.
Sierra was playing its seventh game in as many days Monday.
Shannon Wesley led a balanced attack with nine kills, and Emily O'Brien anchored Ripon's defensive effort as the Indians coasted past visiting Sierra 25-16, 25-7, 25-15 in a nonleague match Monday.
No one drew a tougher assignment to start the Valley Oak League boys soccer season than Manteca.
McKenna Doyle became the third different low medalist of the season for Sierra in the team's fourth Valley Oak League match Monday.
The Valley Oak League uses a points-based system to determine its MVP.
Manteca registered its second 9-0 win of the week Thursday when it shut out visiting East Union in Valley Oak League action.
Francisco Cisneros summed up Weston Ranch's final nonleague match of the season in one word:
Los Banos checked into its nonleague match with visiting East Union holding a deceiving 4-6 record.