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Bulldogs, Hawks garner recognition
A combined 18 players from Central Valley's and Ceres High's varsity football teams received Valley Oak League honors in a vote by the conference's coaches last week.

"I was pretty happy leaving the meeting," Central Valley head coach Tim Garcia said.

"For the most part, I'm pleased," Ceres High leader Brett Johnson said. "But when you have a record like we do, it's pretty easy to get overlooked."

Bulldog punter Kyle Cerny earned first-team honors for the second straight year.

The 6-foot-2, 215-pound senior punted the ball 44 times for 1,476 yards. He had six kicks downed inside the 20.

"That's an awesome honor for him," Johnson said.

The Hawks had two first-team selections, including utility player Vince Lopez and receiver Greg Mathews.

Lopez also made the second-team for his outstanding play on both offense and defense.

The 5-foot-7, 170-pound senior filled the stat sheet while starring at running back and defensive back. He rushed for 969 yards and eight touchdowns on 118 carries. He intercepted six passes, returning one 38 yards for a TD. Vince also had an 82-yard kickoff return score.

"He's one of those kids you can count on," Garcia said. "He's always trying to get better. He has a passion for football. He loves the game."

Mathews had a memorable first season of varsity football. The 6-foot-2, 190-pound junior grabbed 51 passes for 868 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also had a team-leading eight interceptions while playing safety.

"He had a great year," Garcia said. "He's athletic and catches the ball really well. There's a lot of upside to him."

Ceres High's Josh Jones, Justin Canasty, Dashawn Mena and Hadon Lopez, and Central Valley's Alex Casas, Michael Melton and Nate Lopez made the VOL second team.

Canatsy, Jones, Melton and Nate Lopez were honored for their play on offense.

Canatsy, a senior receiver, caught 46 passes for 574 yards and seven touchdowns.

"He was productive," Johnson said.

Jones didn't play for the Bulldogs as a junior. He started at tackle this year.

"He did the best he could each and every play," Johnson said. "His effort was constant."

Melton (OL, Sr.) and Nate Lopez (OL, Sr.) were recognized for their blocking.

"They deserve it," Garcia said. "He (Melton) was our best lineman period on both sides of the ball."

Casas, Mena and Hadon Lopez were major contributors on defense.

Alex (ILB, Sr.) shared co-captain duties with Vince Lopez.

"He was really dominant on Friday nights," Garcia said.

Mena (DL, Jr.) registered 21 tackles, forced two fumbles and recovered one fumble.

"He was a disruptive force inside," Johnson said. "He didn't get pushed around."

Hadon Lopez (ILB, Jr.) totaled 100 tackles, two sacks, one fumble recovery and one forced fumble. He missed the first three games of the season with a knee injury.

"When he came back, he added another dimension to our defense," Johnson said. "He could have easily been a first-teamer. Stat-wise, he's above everybody else. He was always around the ball."

Ceres High's Jesse Gutierrez (LB, Sr.), Brandon Jolley (LB, Sr.) and Jeremy Cagle (LB, Sr.), and Central Valley's Abraham Navarro (QB, Fr.), Nick Mead (LB, Sr.), Tyree Jones (RB/DB, Jr.), Terrence Sadler RB/DB, Jr.) and Josh Beckhart (Jr., OL/DL) received honorable-mention recognition.

Jolley amassed 77 tackles, three forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, two pass deflections and one sack.

Gutierrez had 52 tackles, two fumble recoveries, two pass deflections and half a sack.

Cagle collected 39 tackles, one interception and one pass deflection.

The Hawks tied for third place with East Union and Weston Ranch in the VOL standings (2-5).

The winless Bulldogs (0-7) finished last in conference play.