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Manteca unable to find replacement for Damonte Ranch
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Manteca will have two weeks to prepare for its Valley Oak League opener against Kimball.

The Buffaloes (4-0) were unable to find a replacement opponent after Damonte Ranch of Reno cancelled their game last week because of air-quality concerns stemming from the Mosquito Fire. This means they’ll have just nine games in the regular season.

Manteca is in the middle of its originally-scheduled bye, and the hope was to land an opponent this week.

“We scoured the entire western states,” Manteca coach Mark Varnum said. “Anybody, anywhere, anytime, just couldn’t make it work. We had some teams with openings that didn’t want to play us, and we had teams that wanted to play us but we couldn’t fit it into our schedules.

“It’s unfortunate, but we’re going to keep working and be ready for league play.”

With a bye this week, Kimball (3-2) will also be rested for the league opener. The Jaguars (3-2) will host Manteca on Sept. 30. Manteca will look to avenge a 58-41 loss from last year.

“Our guys are hungry,” Varnum said. “They’re chomping at the bit to get back on the field. Hopefully that carries over to next week.”