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Bulldogs suffer third consecutive loss
Ceres High School's varsity girls basketball team has lost three straight games since enjoying a surprising 2-0 start to the Western Athletic Conference season.

The Bulldogs were edged out by Livingston, 39-36, Thursday night at Phil de la Porte Gymnasium. Ceres High hurt itself by committing more than 30 turnovers.

"I'm not disappointed with the effort," Ceres High head coach Vanessa Morris said. "We're playing hard and continuing to improve. We're competing. We just need to do a better job taking care of the ball."

The Bulldogs dropped to 7-10 overall and 2-3 in the WAC standings.

The Wolves moved to 7-10 and 3-3.

Bryce Ford, the WAC's best player, netted a game-high 18 points for Ceres High.

Bulldog teammates Breanna Freitas and Jessica Ellsworth added eight and six points, respectively. Laura Story and freshman Ryleigh Honberger both scored two points.

Livingston's Ashlee Sharp tallied 17 points. Hulda Modi had 12 points.

Ceres High struggled mightily in falling behind 25-16 in the opening half.

The Bulldogs mounted a comeback in the second half.

Ceres High outscored Livingston 16-8 in the third quarter.

Down 33-32, the Bulldogs mustered just four points in the final period.

Ceres High got within one point with 20 seconds left in regulation. The Bulldogs turned the ball over on back-to-back possessions before losing.

"We had opportunities to win the game," Morris said. "We just need to learn how to finish."

Visiting Ceres High put up a fight early before falling 50-26 to undefeated Patterson on Tuesday, Jan. 17.

"We played a great first half," Morris said.

Ford and Ashton Frampton led the Bulldogs in scoring with nine points apiece.

Freitas and Dia Borden contributed three points each.

Story added two points.

Patterson's Marisabel Carrillo collected a game-high 14 points. Stephanie Cantu and Shealyn Craven totaled 10 and nine points, respectively.

The two teams battled to a 12-all tie in the first quarter.

Patterson outscored Ceres High 38-14 during the final three periods.

The Bulldogs lost 44-15 to the Tigers at Turlock Christian's 7UP Central Valley Invitational Tournament on Friday, Dec. 9. Ford was limited to seven points. She's totaled just 16 points in two games against Patterson this season.

Bryce was slowed by a box-and-1 defense.

"Patterson had a game plan and went with it," Morris said. "I was double teamed my whole career. You got to find ways to work through it."

Ceres High opened WAC play with back-to-back wins against Pacheco and Central Catholic.

The Bulldogs played host to crosstown-rival Central Valley on Tuesday. The score was unavailable at press time.

"You got to respect Central Valley," Morris said several days before the meeting. "They're the defending league champs. Coach Jesse Padilla has done a really good job building his program."