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High school athletics begin with official practices
Quarterback Devin Nunez hands the ball off to Mark Paule as Sierras varsity football team runs through its offensive plays during the first day of official practice on Monday. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO

The fall sports season is officially underway for local high schools.

The CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Dead Period ended Monday as teams held their first official practices. The Dead Period started July 21, and until Monday teams were not allowed to practice with sports-specific equipment. Athletes and coaches were still able to meet for conditioning and weight lifting only.

The fall sports season consists of football, girls volleyball, boys soccer, girls tennis, girls golf, cross country and water polo. For football, teams are required to hold two days of conditioning without pads before conducting full-contact practices.

Scrimmages begin on Saturday, Aug. 23. Official contests kick off the season on Friday, Aug. 29 with the exception of freshman football, which may begin Aug. 28.

Practice starts for winter sports on Nov. 10, and Feb. 9, 2015 for spring.