OAKDALE - The stage is set.
Field issues at Lathrop High forced the Manteca Buffaloes to host their final Valley Oak league meeting with the Spartans and hitting first had no ill effects on the Buffaloes, as they remained unblemished after their first league series with a 12-1 win Wednesday.
RIPON – The Trans Valley League season could have opened with better results, nonetheless, the Ripon Indians are going to have to rebound after a disheartening 7-1 loss to the Hughson Huskies Thursday.
East Union High's sophomore baseball team had a combined three-hit shutout from three pitchers who helped the Squires snap a three-game losing streak and roll into the Valley Oak League season behind am 8-0 win over Stagg Thursday.
Getting the Valley Oak League season underway must have been on the minds of the Sierra High track athletes, after dismantling the Ceres Bulldogs on both levels of completion Wednesday in the VOL opener.
When your No. 1 singles player takes two-out-of-three matches from an opponent that's part of an established program you're probably going to have a good day.
RIPON - Little time had elapsed when the Hughson Huskies struck gold after a throw-in led to a breakaway goal, giving a glimpse of things to come in Ripon Christian's 6-0 loss to Hughson in Trans Valley League play Wednesday.
The Sierra Timberwolves had an opportunity to take a stride forward on the Valley Oak League golf scene, but Oakdale High had other intentions during Sierra's 210-221 loss to the Mustangs Wednesday at Manteca Golf Course.
STOCKTON – The Weston Ranch baseball squad found themselves down 5-0 after three innings, but the deficit was just the first hurdle in the Cougars' come-from-behind win over Monterey Trail in the Claudia Lewis Tournament at McNair High.
After one inning of play, the Lathrop Spartans looked as if competing in its Valley Oak League debut would not be a problem, but two huge innings and 14 runs later Manteca High showed that would not be the case in a 15-0 shellacking Tuesday.
SONORA - The first marquee soccer matchup in the Valley Oak League came on opening day Tuesday, and it was a chance for East Union to stake its claim as one of the conference's teams to beat.
MODESTO – Sierra High's defense only committed two errors, but they proved costly in the Timberwolves' 6-1 loss to Johansen High Tuesday.
East Union's tennis team met its first test in Valley Oak League play Tuesday against defending singles champion Luis Ochoa and the Ceres Bulldogs.
LATHROP - Ripon played near perfect softball save for poor execution on the base paths on a few plays, but head coach Robert Vernon gave kudos to first-year varsity Lathrop's defensive effort.
Competing without some of its best players is nothing new to Ripon High's girls soccer team.
They may be young, but the Manteca Buffaloes are proving to be fast learners.
STOCKTON - The fall from grace has been sudden and swift for the Lathrop boys basketball team, but coach Nate McGrath can see the potential in all the losses.
LATHROP - Gurveen Bal hit a 3-pointer in the middle of a 14-0 second-quarter run to give the Lathrop girls basketball team the lead for good in a 34-31 win over Chavez-Stockton on Monday.
Weston Ranch brought home the third-place trophy from 37th Annual Tony Contreras Delta Queen Classic on Saturday with a 61-48 win over McNair-Stockton, and three-year Cougars starter Elisabeth Alexander received All-Tournament honors as well as the award for most points scored in the three-day affair at 71 points.
STOCKTON – It came down to one bout.
STOCKTON - Sierra's uneven effort of late was bound to catch up to the Timberwolves.
Weston Ranch mounted a late charge but came up short in a 53-50 loss to Merced in the semifinal round of the 37th Annual Tony Contreras Delta Queen Classic at Stagg High on Friday.
With intentions of challenging his team, Manteca head coach Brett Lewis sent out an email to coaches from the Bay Area and Sacramento region in the offseason to set up a nonleague game.
Elisabeth Alexander wasn't entirely satisfied with her effort Thursday in the first round of the 37th Annual Tony Contreras Delta Queen Classic at Stagg High.
STOCKTON - The Sierra High Timberwolves saw their 23-point, second-half lead dwindle down to a single point in the final seconds against Chavez Thursday.
Sierra cross country coach Mike Rosendin has been named one of the Sac-Joaquin Section's six Model Coaches of the Year.
Cole Stevens had his best shooting effort on a night in which he did not feel well.
Gregori-Modesto closed out the first half against host Manteca on an 11-2 run and then watched the Buffaloes blitz out of the locker room on a 21-4 run on the way to a 57-52 non-league boys basketball win at Winter Gymnasium.
Much has changed in the Southern League volleyball ranks, but one thing has remained the same: Ripon Christian still rules this court.
In a matchup of 6-foot-8 centers, it was 5-10 guard Daniel Wyatt who came through in a big way for Sierra in its McDonald's Classic opener Wednesday at Delta College.