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The sixth installment of the Ceres Classic will be staged at Bulldog Stadium this Friday at 7 p.m.

Central Valley's varsity football program will look to continue its run of dominance over crosstown-rival Ceres High.

"We're not underestimating them," Hawks receiver/cornerback Greg Tripp said. "We just know what we have and how much damage we can do. We're bigger, stronger, faster and more athletic."

The Hawks (3-6, 1-4 Western Athletic Conference) have an all-time record of 4-1 against the Bulldogs (3-6, 2-3). Ceres High won the first meeting, 20-7.

"Record-wise, we're better than them this year," Bulldogs head coach Bret Durossette said. "We beat Livingston. They didn't."

Central Valley will compete at less than full strength due to several injuries.

Tripp dislocated his right knee cap against Central Catholic last week.

"It's a day-by-day thing," Greg said. "I'm pretty sure I'll be able to play."

Hawk junior quarterback Abraham Navarro's playing status is doubtful. He's missed five games with a left knee injury.

"I've been out for most of the season," said Navarro, who has a career record of 2-0 at the varsity level versus Ceres High. "Kenny Lopez will be ready for the game if I can't play. He's a gamer."

Ja'Quan Gardner will shoulder the load on offense for the Hawks. The sophomore tailback leads the Stanislaus District in rushing with 1,630 yards. He's also scored 18 touchdowns. He racked up a program-record 397 yards and six TDs in a 49-14 win over first-year Pacheco.

"The running back they have is pretty special," Durossette said. "Our job is going to be able to contain him. They have a lot of talented guys."

Ceres High's offensive leaders are Blake Hurst (QB), Nick Welsh (WR), James Rice (WR), Zach Naylor (RB) and George Arroyo (RB).

Central Valley's run defense struggled in losses to WAC-rivals Central Catholic, Los Banos, Patterson and Livingston.

The four teams rushed for a combined 1,668 yards.

"What are they going to do to stop us?" Durossette asked.

Tripp caught three touchdown passes, and older brother Tyree Jones rumbled for what was then a school-record 391 yards and three scores during Central Valley's 55-24 rout of Ceres High last season.

The Bulldogs kept the game close for three quarters.

The 2011 showdown could go either way.

"It's going to be intense," Tripp said.

Said Durossette: "Our kids are going to be ready. Their kids will be ready. The team that makes the fewest amount of mistakes is going to win."

The two teams crossed paths last Friday.

Central Valley players were dropped off near the side entrance of Ceres High prior to the start of their WAC game with Central Catholic at Bulldog Stadium.

Bulldog players used the same bus to travel to Patterson for their road game.

"There was a little trash talking and mugging," Tripp said.