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East Union soccer team struggles at Pitman Tourney
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TURLOCK — The East Union High varsity girls soccer team had its good moments but also proved there is work to be done after going 1-3 in the Pitman Tournament this past Friday and Saturday.
The Lancers’ only victory came at the expense of Johansen of Modesto, 4-1. Megan Howley, Odemaris Castillo (two) and Kaci Todd scored all of East Union’s goals in the opening half, with assists coming from Rachel Bonds, Julie Lennert, and Todd (two). Howley also had an assist.
Meri Zeru, Reanna Schmitt, Jesika Villegas and Lennert played well defensively in front of goalkeeper Gianna Hedin.
East Union (1-3-1) had a rough start to the tournament Friday, losing 3-1 to Merced. Howley hooked up with Castillo for the game’s first goal, but defensive miscues, one of which led to a penalty kick, doomed the Lancers.
Turlock opened Saturday’s action with an 8-2 throttling of the Lancers, as Castillo and Howley again found the back of the net. Kaitlyn Hughes and Villegas were credited with the assists.
East Union rounded out the tournament with a 1-0 loss to Patterson.
East Union’s frosh-soph team (5-0) is off to a hot start, winning all four of its Pitman Tournament games while recording three shutouts.
The Squires won a shootout for the first-place trophy. Stephanie Sabala, Melissa Gomez and Lauren Sveum led the team offensively.
The defense was anchored by goalie Ashley Espercueta and fullbacks Bianca Westly, Nataly Vazquez, Adrianna Alverranga, Shane Haroldson and Karen Vera. Julianna Perez, Kendra Kaiswerman and Jagaeet Dhillon dominated at midfield.
East Union’s varsity and frosh-soph teams return to non-league play Tuesday against Lincoln in Stockton.
Ripon 3, Patterson 1
In Ripon, Renae McFadden booted in a pair of goals and assisted another to help lead 6-0 Ripon to its best start in program history.
Ariel Anaya added one goal and an assist.
Modesto Junior College’s men’s track and field team, ranked sixth in the state and third in Northern California according to, got big contributions from area athletes last week in the Maurice Compton Invitational hosted at Merritt College in Oakland.
Ripon graduate Kirk Anderson and East Union alumnus Abdiel Martinez-Ramos were a part of the meet’s winning 4x400 relay team, ranked first nationally. Anderson also won the 400-meter dash in 49.23 seconds.

— Jonamar Jacinto