MERCED - Despite competing for rival schools, Pitman High's Frank Finch and Turlock High's Jorge Guzman have a simple plan whenever they're in a cross country race: They want to stick together.
The first two sets between the Pitman High and Turlock High volleyball teams seemed uncharacteristic, as one rival was more dominant than the other. But it all changed in the third game, when rallies from both sides got the crowd of hundreds more involved in the crosstown rivalry meeting.
Turlock High junior golfer Emma Mendes began play at the Central California Conference Championships on Tuesday with a disadvantage. She didn't get a chance to practice on the Pheasant Run Golf Course in Chowchilla, where the tournament was held.
In two days, the Pitman High football players will get a chance to redeem themselves. And they're facing the ideal opponent.
Prior to the 2010 season, Hilmar High girls golf coach Ty Pettigrew was concerned about having enough athletes to play.
The Turlock Bulldogs (6-1, 1-1 CCC) erased the memory of last week's gut wrenching last-second loss to Buhach Colony (7-0, 2-0 CCC) to earn their first Central California Conference victory in a 40-35 comeback road win over the Merced Bears (3-4, 1-1 CCC).
ATWATER - It didn't take long for the Buhach Colony High football team to set the tone in Friday night's league game against Pitman High, as running back Stetson Barton danced 80 yards down the right sideline to give his Thunder a touchdown on the very first play of the game.
There was no need for Elise Cusenza and her Turlock High girls tennis teammates to go into a jubilant celebration after beating crosstown rival Pitman High 9-0 on a hot Thursday afternoon.
Sure, the day was hot. But that didn't stop the players of the Pitman High and Turlock High girls golf teams from pulling off standout performances in the final Central California Conference match of the regular season on Thursday afternoon.
For 80 minutes, the Pitman High and Turlock High boys soccer teams showcased the true meaning of a crosstown rivalry at the Turlock Sports Complex on Tuesday afternoon.
With every win, the Pitman High football team is sending a message across the high school football community. The Pride stamped out one last week, when they stomped all over upstart Golden Valley High in Merced, an easy 34-3 win that changed the perspective of a Pitman team that began the season with a loss.
The Pitman Pride (5-1, 1-0 CCC) put up over 400 yards of offense and displayed a stout defense to win their Central California Conference opener 34-3 over the Golden Valley Cougars (4-2, 0-1 CCC) on Friday.
With his hands sliced up from a night's work of aggressive playmaking and his helmet off, Turlock High quarterback Kevin Kramer tried to explain the meaning of Friday night's 28-27 heartbreaker of a loss to Buhach Colony High. Just minutes earlier, he drove his team all the way from their own 32-yard line of Joe Debely Stadium before launching a long pass to receiver Tyler Cook, allowing the Bulldogs an opportunity to tie the game up.
The Pride of Pitman came into their second game of the 38th annual Frank Godinez tournament against Laguna Creek - which had to forfeit their first round game due to Thursday's storm -with hopes of turning things around after a crushing first round loss to Beyer High.
Another solid effort from Turlock High on the court has landed the Bulldogs in the finals of the Frank Godinez Boys Basketball Tournament for the third year in a row.
Things are finally shaping up for Denair High boys basketball coach RJ Henderson, with the help of assistant head coach Garett Elliott and the commitment from this year's team.
With football being such a rich and successful tradition at Hilmar High, it seems like the basketball program takes the back seat - especially after coming away with only one winning season since 2007.
Pitman High volleyball has been synonymous with dominance in 2014. The Pride steamrolled nearly every opponent they faced this season with its combination of size, power and speed. And when a team rose to the occasion to provide Pitman with a challenge, its girls seemed to persevere through sheer force of will.
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