Turlock High drove through two of the Modesto Metro Conference's best teams on Thursday and Friday to earn a shot at tonight's Godinez Tournament Championship. The Bulldogs beat Beyer High by the skin of their teeth, 43-40, in the first round on Thursday and then proceeded to manhandle Modesto High 68-40 Friday night. But Turlock's biggest test lies in the form of Laguna Creek High who handedly defeated Davis and McNair High.
For the past nine years Turlock High's wrestling season has begun with a Madera High dual, and for the past seven years the Central Section stalwart Coyotes have stepped off the mat as victors. The Bulldogs hosted Madera on Wednesday and for a short time it looked like history would repeat itself.
Turlock Christian High's girls basketball team has found itself in a unique position this season. After claiming the Southern Athletic League title, competing for the SJS Division V Championship, and advancing to the quarterfinals of the Northern California Playoff Tournament, the Eagles return to the court with both star player Halie Bergman and some new faces that are set to be the future of TC girls basketball.
Turlock Christian High's boys basketball team struggled with numbers, height, and Southern Athletic League competition last season. How the Eagles stack up against the SAL in 2012 remains to be seen, but new head coach Eddie Sai has team size and height covered.
Five teams traveled to Hilmar on Saturday to join the Yellowjackets in the revived Hilmar Irwin-Stevinson Lions Invitational. Pitman, Buhach Colony, Atwater, Livingston, and Gregori High each competed in the tournament but only one walked away on top. That honor belonged to the Pride who finished the day 5-0 as a team, while Hilmar finished fourth with a team score of 2-3.
Last season Pitman High's girls claimed the Central California Conference basketball crown for the first time in program history, posted a season's best 11-4 record, and advanced to the post-season for the third year in a row. Now, the Lady Pride are back and ready to run the court again, equipped with new pieces to fit what they hope to be a repeat season.
High school coaches regularly deal with the need to replenish their teams each year as players are lost to graduation, but rarely do they find themselves in a position of replacing an entire starting lineup.
Pitman High's wrestling team is out to a good start to the 2012 season. With two returning Masters qualifiers, the Pride took first place in Saturday's Hilmar Irwin-Stevenson Lions Invitational, finishing undefeated as a team. Head coach Adam Vasconcellos believes Saturday's dual performance is the first in what will be a shockingly productive season.
There were smiles and a few tears, but mostly smiles on Wednesday when Pitman's Jordan Gonzalez and Hailee Baldwin signed their respective letters of intent to the University of the Pacific and Fresno State. Staying with Pride tradition, a large crowd gathered in the school's library to watch the culmination of the two athletes' energy, effort, and time and catch a glimpse of what their future might hold.
It's a season of renewal and transition for Turlock High's girls basketball team. After a late season slide in 2011 that saw the Lady Bulldogs lose five of their last six games, Turlock enlisted the help of first year head coach Michelle Bush to bring the team back to basics.
Turlock High is back for the 2012-13 Central California Conference basketball season and eager to climb its way back to the top. The Bulldogs are without their leading scorer of the last two years, Alek Carlson, but the return of seniors DaShawn Holcombe, Tyler Murphy, Darren Trainor, and Austin Bush has left head coach Doug Cornfoot with an optimistic outlook for the season.
Nearly 60 teenagers lined the walls of Turlock High's wrestling room on Monday. The large and enthusiastic crowd was there to compete within their individual weight classes in the first step towards an expected trimming of the ranks.
1st Team All-League
Delhi High's girls basketball team is on a quest for newfound status in the Southern Athletic League this season, eager to leave behind them the days of being dominated on the court. With new head coach Demetrio Quintrero at the helm, the Hawks hope 2012 will be the turnaround year the program's been waiting for- and if Quintrero's enthusiasm is any indicator it just might be.
Delhi High's boys basketball team had a decent run in the Southern Athletic League last season, finishing 8-6 and tying for third place. After losing all but two players to graduation, the Hawks are back in 2012 with both a new roster and new head coach in Eugene Drummond.
Denair High tennis head coach Bill Weber has his sights set on a long and prosperous future the Coyote program and he is off to a good start. After Friday's Southern Athletic League tournament, Denair can boast two league winners in the mixed doubles and the boys singles brackets.
Turlock High won the final game of its three-game series with rival Pitman High Friday afternoon, beating the Pride 8-3 after falling 0-7 on Tuesday and 5-6 on Thursday. But while Pitman walked away from Turlock's home field in the loser's column on Friday, its boys exited the week as winners, at least partially, of the Central California Conference with only one win needed to claim the outright championship.
A local face will be taking over the Denair High School football head coaching duties.
Hilmar High's Jacob Ahid has been a small-town, valley boy all his life. He's developed as a baseball player from child to adolescent, but for the next step in his baseball career Ahid will be leaving Hilmar and heading to Seaside where he will become the newest addition to California State University, Monterey Bay.
The Hilmar High boys varsity golf team failed to pick up a Trans Valley League championship this past Monday at La Contenta Golf Course.
Pitman, which has been neck and neck with Merced all season long, placed second for both the girls and boys in the Central California Conference Championship meet that took place at Golden Valley High on Saturday to finish just behind Merced in the CCC.
Turlock High's Ryan Asai went into Tuesday's Central California Conference singles tournament with high hopes. The Bulldog boasted an undefeated record heading into the tournament, but met his match in Merced's Juan Ciudad in the semifinal round.
The Turlock High boys varsity golf team has won its fourth Central California Conference tournament in the last five years after edging out Pitman and Buhach on Monday at the Merced Country Club.
It was a defensive deadlock for the majority of Tuesday's cross-town showdown between Turlock and Pitman High. After four innings of solid pitching from the Bulldogs' Nick Avila and Pride's Nick Jones, the scoreboard read 0-0 and everyone was left questioning, who would falter first?
After three years of getting dominated by Merced (10-2), the Pitman High (9-3) varsity softball team finally made history on Friday afternoon, topping the Bears at home, 3-2, and snapping an eight game losing streak that dated back to the 2012 season.
The Turlock Christian varsity softball team has now boasted back-to-back league wins after beating Stone Ridge Christian on Friday, 16-5.
The Turlock High (8-2) varsity baseball team has quietly yet steadily been creeping and stalling just behind or barely ahead of Pitman High for the top spot in the Central California Conference for most the year.
Friday marked the third time this season that both Delhi and Denair High met for one final showdown on the tennis courts as the battle for second place in the Southern Athletic League continued heading into the final two matches.
League championships for boys golf will be held on Monday for schools across the area. These tournaments are typically a place for teams to put in one final, solid performance in the hopes of qualifying for Divisionals as a team, but for Turlock and Hilmar High, its respective tournaments will instead be a formality as its boys have a ticket to Divisionals all but in the bag.
Alyssa Stockton has experienced her fair share of success during her 11 years in a softball uniform, but her biggest achievement was undoubtedly reached on Friday when she signed her letter of intent for California State University, Bakersfield where she will become one of the Roadrunners' pitchers.
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