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SOCCER: Silva’s brace helps Manteca capture VOL co-championship
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Manteca’s girls soccer team was without key players for its final two regular-season contests, but that didn’t stop the Buffaloes from locking up a share of the Valley Oak League championship.

Cameron Silva scored two goals in the first half, and the Buffs held off Kimball for a 2-0 road win Monday at Don Nicholson Stadium. They were down three starting players, including one of their top scorers in midfielder Caitlynn Wong who served a one-game suspension for yellow-card accumulation.

On Saturday, Manteca (10-1-1 VOL, 19-3-1 overall) defeated playoff hopeful Central Catholic 2-0 while Silva was out of state for a college ID camp. The two wins makes the Buffaloes co-champions with rival Sierra. It’s the fourth league title in program history for Manteca.

“It would have been nice to have the outright title,” Manteca coach Justin Coenenberg said. “We just had the little slip-up against East Union (a 2-2 draw last Thursday), but I told the girls a year from now nobody will remember this was a co-championship, the numbers are going up on the board in the gym.

“To be honest, the adversity we faced here at the end of the season makes us a stronger team. The girls really rallied and came together, and it makes us stronger going into the playoffs.”

Sienna Jones assisted Silva’s first goal on Monday. Silva provided the insurance goal on a set piece. Kimball (7-4-1, 11-8-2) finished in third place and also qualified for the playoffs. The Jaguars had much of the possession in the second half but could not breakthrough for threatening looks. Manteca outshot them, 8-2.

“We allowed them to have the ball as long as they were moving it sideways and backwards,” Coenenberg said. “We just sat back and stayed organized with the 2-0 lead and were able to get some opportunities on counter attacks.”

He praised the efforts of sophomore Coraima Medina and Aleah Melendez, who both played out of position at center midfield and sweeper, respectively, to fill-in for the absent starters.

“We had some girls step up and do a really good job tonight.” Coenenberg said.

The Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs begin Friday.


Ripon Christian 3, Le Grand 0

The Knights (11-0-2, 18-4-3 overall) can now shift their focus to the SJS playoffs after completing its unbeaten run in the Southern Athletic League.

Sisters Addison and Maya DeJong accounted for all three goals in the regular-season finale on the road. Maya netted one in each half, while Addison scored directly off a corner kick cross. The shutout is the seventh in league for RC.