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A Perfect Start
Darryl Dickson, head coach of Central Valley High School's varsity boys basketball program, finalized his roster last week.

Sophomores Diego Sanchez, Ja'Quan Gardner, Jordan Sek and Milton Uti, and freshman Jaron Dickson all contributed during the Hawks' 2-0 start in Western Athletic Conference play. Veterans Camron Thornton and Miguel Rodriguez also filled key roles.

"We like being in first place even though it's early in the season," coach Dickson said. "We have a good group of kids. They're willing to work hard. If they do the things they're taught, they'll have an opportunity to win more games."

Central Valley remained unbeaten in league and improved to 7-10 on the year following Friday's 66-54 home win over Patterson.

"I'm really happy with the effort," Darryl said. "We only had 13 turnovers. That's big. We've had games where we've had as many as 30."

Thornton, a third-year varsity player, tallied a team-high 21 points against the Tigers.

Rodriguez scored 20 points.

Sanchez collected a career-high 17 points while logging playing time at all five positions. He also guarded Patterson's top player on defense.

Dickson added six points.

Gardner and Uti each had one point.

Sek was also a part of the Hawks' eight-man rotation.

"Diego's been a big piece of the puzzle," coach Dickson said. "He's done an exceptional job for us."

Central Valley outscored Patterson 37-18 in the middle periods.

The Tigers got within eight points in the fourth quarter. The Hawks extended their lead to 13 on Sanchez's 3-pointer and close-range basket.

"It makes me happy and proud to get the opportunity to play varsity as a sophomore," Diego said. "I just do whatever the coach wants me to do to help the team win."

Central Valley posted a 58-43 win over Livingston on Wednesday in Ceres.

The Hawks outscored the Wolves 20-6 in the opening eight minutes of the second half.

"We had a really good third quarter," Darryl said.

Rodriguez had eight of his game-high 16 points in the momentum-swaying period.

Hawk Duarte finished with 11 points.

Sanchez, Thornton, Dickson, Gardner and Sek chipped in with nine, eight, six, four and two points, respectively.

Junior Varsity

Central Valley High School's junior-varsity boys basketball team opened the Western Athletic Conference season with back-to-back losses last week.

Visiting Livingston edged out the Hawks 61-56 on Wednesday.

Central Valley's final shot attempt, a 3-pointer from the left wing, was blocked as time expired.

"We should have never been in that position," Hawks head coach Mike Rodriguez said. "We pretty much beat ourselves. We turned the ball over more than 20 times. If we had 10 less, we win that game."

Freshman Manuel Garcia paced Central Valley with a team-high 13 points. Maleek Berry, Kenny Mesa, Waleed Majeed and Parker Griffin added 12, eight, seven and four points, respectively. B.J. Prak and Tranjit Singh collected three points each. Mohak Kumar and Juan Manriquez both scored two points.

The two teams battled to a 29-all tie in the opening half.

"It was competitive the whole game," Rodriguez said.

Central Valley never posed a threat while losing 78-37 to Patterson on Friday in Ceres.

The Hawks fell behind by 20 points, 38-18, in the first half.

"We threw everything we had at them," Rodriguez said. "That's probably the best team we've played all year."

Singh led Central Valley in scoring with 11 points.

Garcia, Griffin, Prak, Mesa and Berry chipped in with eight, seven, five, three and two points, respectively.