WESTON RANCH – It was a big game in terms of Valley Oak League positioning, and both the Sierra and Weston Ranch played tight to start Friday night's contest.
RIPON - The wait is over.
WESTON RANCH - Sierra High's sophomore boys basketball team did well to take a 17-16 lead into halftime after scoring just two points in the opening quarter but ultimately fell to Weston Ranch 41-37 in Valley Oak League action Friday.
It wasn't senior night Thursday at the Dalben Center, but it may as well have been as Rachel McDaniel, Ashley Rose and Alyssa Wegner were lights out for the Lancers in a 66-40 win over Manteca.
The accolades keep on coming for area standouts Nick Gardner and Michael Turner, as they joined two others from the Valley Oak League on the ESPN RISE/CalHiSports.com all-state medium schools second team.
RIVERBANK – Ripon picked up its first Trans Valley League win in impressive style Thursday night, holding Riverbank to just one point in the first and five through the first half on its way to a 50-18 win.
The first round of Weston Ranch High's "Tour of Manteca" is over, but coach Chris Bauer is hoping that his Cougars' recent stretch of solid play isn't.
The Manteca High sophomore girls basketball team came to play Thursday evening at the Dalben Center, but after a slow first half, the Squires kicked it into gear and ran away with a 62-44 win.
So how does Manteca High sophomore Kiwi Gardner follow up Friday's career-best 36-point performance against Sierra?
A number of intriguing story lines came out of the Valley Oak League tri-meet between Manteca, East Union and Sierra at Sierra High Wednesday afternoon, including the continued ascension of Lancer 119-pounder Marco Castaneda, who came off his first tournament championship Saturday to take down two of the best wrestlers the VOL has to offer.
With senior center Tyler Willis done for the season after he tore an ACL Friday against Manteca, Sierra High was looking for a few players to step up and fill the large void left by the Timberwolves' second leading scorer Wednesday night at the Dalben Center.
Ryan Culpepper beat the buzzer, and his Manteca Buffaloes' sophomore boys basketball team beat upset-minded Weston Ranch as a result.
RIPON - With Ripon High returning all of its key components and Modesto Christian playing in another basketball universe, Tuesday night's Trans Valley League matchup between Ripon Christian and Riverbank projected to be a pivotal league contest in terms of league and postseason positioning.
Jim Agostini didn't want it to be about him.
WESTON RANCH - After snapping East Union's big streak, Weston Ranch is hoping to start its own.
STOCKTON - There are close volleyball matches and then there was the Valley Oak League duel between visiting Manteca and Weston Ranch.
Manteca's girls tennis team ended the first round of Valley Oak League play with a pivotal 5-4 win at Oakdale despite missing two regular doubles players Tuesday.
Lathrop threatened to force a fifth set but came up short against visiting East Union, which prevailed 25-15, 25-22, 13-25, 25-21 for its first Valley Oak League victory of the season.
McKenna Doyle posted her best score of the season Tuesday at Manteca Park Golf Course and was low medalist in Sierra's 258-287 victory over Oakdale.
Ripon Christian got back on track Tuesday with a 4-1 win at Waterford.
LATHROP - East Union was relentless in the attacking third during the first half, pressuring the Lathrop defense into mistakes with precision passing and outstanding individual play.
Missed opportunities and defensive breakdowns kept Sierra from gaining at least a point in the Valley Oak League standings Monday.
Ripon High's girls golf team placed second among North Division teams in the Valley Foothill League Mid-Year Tournament, which was held Monday at Micke Grove Golf Course in Lodi.
Alyssa Burch and the rest of the Manteca High volleyball team couldn't mask their excitement after notching the clinching point.
Escalon had a score to settle with Ripon on Thursday as the two met in a showdown of undefeated teams in the Valley Foothill League's North Division.
Travis Vander Molen found the back of the net twice as the Ripon Christian boys soccer team nearly erased a three-goal deficit in a 5-3 loss to visiting Delhi on Thursday.
The Weston Ranch girls tennis team played its most competitive match of the season in a 5-4 loss to East Union on Thursday.
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.