By the 30th minute of the Sierra-Ceres Valley Oak League showdown at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium, the visiting Bulldogs had taken just one shot.
For the first two games Thursday at Sierra High, it was hard to distinguish between the Timberwolves and Mustangs. Both teams played fast-paced, hard-hitting volleyball, and both teams earned hard-fought victories.
CERES – Jackie Ketner was back on top of her game and back atop the East Union scorecard following a 177-253 win over Central Valley at St. Stanislaus Thursday afternoon.
WESTON RANCH - It took a team effort for Lathrop High's sophomore volleyball team to rebound from its first-game letdown and win a three-game thriller (19-25, 25-18, 15-12) against Weston Ranch Thursday.
Field turf. State-of-the-art lighting and sound systems. Roomy press boxes with restrooms and elevator access. And scoreboards that can light up and entire town.
It was Manteca and East Union, and yes, it was a drag-down, knock-out fight to the finish, but after falling in Games 1 and 2, 15-25, and 21-25, respectively, the Lancers stormed all the way back for 25-22, 25-23 and 15-11 wins in Games 3 through 5 Wednesday at Winter Gym.
Jamie Beck finished with 26 kills and impressed Sierra head coach Tevani Liotard, but in the end it would be another Liotard, Jaslynn, who would lead the Timberwolves to an important bounce-back win, 25-23, 22-25, 20-25, 25-19, 15-9, over Ceres Wednesday.
The Manteca High sophomore volleyball team flexed its muscle Wednesday at Winter Gym in an impressive 25-6, 25-14 sweep over crosstown rival East Union.
RIPON - It was a tale of two halves Wednesday at Mistlin Park.
OAKDALE – For the first hour of play Wednesday in Oakdale, nothing seemed to go right for the Sierra High tennis team.
RIPON – While Ripon High's dominant 25-10, 25-7, 25-8 road sweep of crosstown rival RC appeared entirely forgettable for anyone in the building wearing blue, Knights head coach Tiger Shelton hopes his players remember Tuesday's contest for years to come.
Ricky Pacheco saw an opening and reacted.
Kaylee Joaquin has been the leader of the Manteca golf team for three straight seasons.
With Ceres' recent upset of Oakdale, the Timberwolves are talking championship, and for good reason.
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.
Jack Miller recently retired from Manteca High, where the History teacher spent more than 30 years as an assistant coach with the football team. Miller was a part of four Sac-Joaquin Section championship teams and was twice voted Best of Manteca's Best Local Coach. Now City of Manteca Hall of Famer pays close attention to his yards, his golf game and granddaughter.
The Manteca High boys soccer team took full advantage of its first practice in nearly a week.
Ripon Christian laughs last.
RIPON - The hole was just too deep for Ripon's volleyball team to climb out of.
East Union's grueling opening week of the season may have done it some good.
Sierra's girls golf team opened the Valley Oak League with a statement Tuesday at Dryden Park Golf Course in Modesto.
East Union's 8-1 victory, its first of the Valley Oak League season, looks one-sided at the surface, but visiting Lathrop made the Lancers work for it on Tuesday.
Hairo Silva recorded his second hat trick of the season, and Lathrop needed every single one of those goals to top host Beyer of Modesto 4-3 on Monday.