In what is considered the wrestling season's first real test, the Pitman High wrestlers did better than expected.
DENAIR - It was as if the scoreboard was playing mind games with the Denair High boys basketball team. In one moment, the Coyotes were up by nearly double-digits. Then the next moment, they were down by a bunch.
After almost everyone walked out of the Pitman High gym and into Friday night's rain, there was a candid moment between the school's athletic director, Dave Walls, and the school's top girls basketball player.
Led by Denair High guard Clayton McDonald's 17 points, the Coyotes defeated Central Valley High 68-50 in the semifinal game of the Denair High Tournament late Friday night to earn a spot in today's tournament championship game against Central Catholic at 8 p.m.
Surprisingly, no one affiliated with the Turlock High boys basketball program closed his or her eyes in a sequence that appeared doomful. They watched in awe and anticipation, as the ball was repeatedly batted against the backboard and rim like a game of handball.
The game didn't come down to the last minute, Turlock Christian girls basketball coach Edwin Santiago protested afterward.
There was just one team that stood between the Turlock High boys basketball players and a rematch with Modesto Christian in the championship game of the 34th annual Frank Godinez Tournament.
It seemed like the perfect time for a comeback.
For most high school wrestlers from the Turlock area, the goal every season is to take that drive down Highway 99 toward Bakersfield. It's there that all the state's best congregate for the CIF Championships in early March.
Two years ago, Nick LaFrancis achieved something rare for a Denair High wrestler. He qualified for the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Tournament, which is just one step from the elusive CIF State Championships in Bakersfield. Even if he didn't win a medal or a single match, making it that far is an unforgettable experience.
When going up against a boys basketball team full of giants, there's really only one thing you can do.
As the Hilmar girls basketball team started their season by facing Waterford High Thursday night, first year coach Don Inman paced the sidelines, afraid to celebrate his birthday until the final buzzer.
This season, the girls basketball teams in the Turlock area will experience many different changes.
For the Turlock High girls basketball players, it's hard to forget about what transpired on Feb. 25.
MODESTO - The way the game started, it was safe to assume that the Turlock boys basketball team was going to give the few dozen fans inside the cold Panther Palace gym on the Modesto High campus reasons to go home early.
Turlock High has dusted off its wrestling gear and is back on the mat for the 2014 winter season. After finishing third in the Central California Conference last year and graduating two state qualifiers, the Bulldogs return with a handful of experienced wrestlers and a crop of fresh faces as they aim to take league and return to state once again.
The sport of water polo has thrived in Turlock and the rest of the Central Valley since its introduction roughly 40 years ago by the late Steve Feaver.
The Pitman High varsity wrestling team is coming off the most successful season in school history after winning its first Central California Conference title in 2013-14 and posting a 12-1 overall record.
Trans Valley League
Coming off a devastating defeat to Sonora High in the CIF Division-IV Sac-Joaquin Section Championship, Hilmar High's volleyball team was hoping to bounce back in the CIF Northern California State Tournament but things ended quickly for the Yellowjackets who lost in straight sets, 0-3.
Four days after winning the CIF Division I Sac-Joaquin Section championship in one of its hardest matches of the season, Pitman High played Oakland Tech High in what could be argued was its easiest match.
The Turlock Christian High volleyball team is moving on to the Northern California State Tournament semifinal after defeating Fall River in the opening round of the CIF Division-VI Nor Cal State Tournament, 3-1, on Tuesday.
Pitman High volleyball etched a place for itself in Sac-Joaquin Section history Friday night with its first ever Division I championship victory.
The Hilmar High volleyball team went into Friday's Section championship game against Sonora looking for a very different outcome than last year's matchup. The Yellowjackets left the UC Davis court disappointed, however, because for the second straight year Sonora outplayed Hilmar to take the banner.
Winning a Section title isn't easy, but the Turlock Christian High volleyball team makes it seem so, especially after taking home three consecutive banners.
Pitman High is headed to the CIF Division I Sac-Joaquin Section championship match for the first time ever after Tuesday's 3-1 (19-25, 25-14, 25-13 and 25-20) victory over St. Francis High of Sacramento.
Maybe the second time is the charm.
The list of Turlock High athletes moving on to the collegiate level continues to grow.
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