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Bulldogs surprise Turlock
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Turlock High had a comfortable lead at halftime in Ceres Friday night. The Ceres High boys basketball team didn't allow Turlock to close the door in the second half as it maintained its poise and mounted an impressive comeback.

Ceres' Derrick Goblirsch made the game-winning shot. The junior forward spun past a defender and made a layup with three seconds to play to lift Ceres to a 54-52 win over Turlock, one of the top teams in the Sac-Joaquin Section and Central California Conference. Ceres lost 58-30 to Turlock on Jan. 14.

"The kids knew we had a chance to get back in it," said Ceres coach Jason Martin, whose team fell behind by 10 at halftime. "They worked real hard."

Added Turlock coach Juan Alaniz: "Every time we play Ceres it's exciting. We hate them. They hate us. It's a great rivalry."

Turlock had its 15-game winning streak snapped and fell to 6-1 in the CCC, 18-6 overall. Ceres improved to 2-5 in the CCC, 6-14 overall.

"They didn't come in with a losing attitude," Alaniz said.

Eight Ceres players scored, including three in double figures.

Goblirsch scored a team-high 13 points. Charlie Cunha and Zack Wiedenbeck had 11 points. Brad Simmons added eight points, Mike Arnold and Rafael Valencia had four points and Ross Tate scored two points. Matt Schwark had one point.

Seven Turlock players scored.

Benny Koochoie finished with a game-high 25 points, including five 3-pointers. Kevin Maloney had 13 points, all in the first half. Elliot Barker and Alex Esquivel had four points. Justin Williamson and Nick Storment had three and two points, respectively. Ryan Barker had one point.

Ceres contested shots and rebounded in the second half. Ceres limited Turlock to just three 3-pointers. Turlock made six in the first half.

"We mixed up our defenses in the second half," Martin said.

Down 28-18 at halftime, Ceres outscored Turlock 18-11 to pull within three points, 39-36, at the end of the third quarter.

Ceres outscored Turlock 18-13 in the fourth quarter where there was three ties and five lead changes.

Simmons and Cunha banked in back-to-back 3-pointers to put Ceres ahead by one, 46-45, with 3:17 left in regulation. Koochoie buried two 3-pointers in the span of 90 seconds to give Turlock a 51-48 lead with 1:31 remaining.

Ceres responded. Wiedenbeck knocked down a mid-range jumper and Simmons made two free throws to put Ceres ahead by one, 52-51, with 53.5 seconds left.

Turlock's Ryan Barker made one of two free throws to even the score at 52-all.

Koochoie had a chance to tie the game but he missed a short jumper as time expired. Koochoie had 17 points in the second half, including 10 straight in the final quarter.

Ceres outscored Turlock 6-1 in the final 1:24. Ceres shot 54 percent (7-for-13) from the floor in the fourth.

"We played really good up and down the lineup," Martin said.

Ceres shot 69 percent (11-for-16) from the free-throw line. Turlock shot 50 percent (4-for-8) from the foul line.

Golden Valley finished off Ceres High in the fourth quarter with a 10-2 run in the span of two-and-a-half minutes Wednesday night at Cougar Arena. The Bulldogs trailed by just five points, 43-38, at the end of the third quarter.

Ceres fell to 5-15 overall, 1-5 in the Central California Conference standings. Golden Valley improved to 11-9 overall, 2-4 in the CCC.

The Cougars led from start to finish thanks to stellar outside shooting. Golden Valley made seven 3-pointers in the game.

Ceres fell behind 7-0 early in the first quarter and trailed 15-8 heading into the second quarter.

Ceres cut Golden Valley's lead to four, 20-16, with 4:57 remaining in the first half. The Cougars answered with a 9-0 run that helped push their lead to 13, 29-16.

The Bulldogs trailed by just eight points, 31-23, at halftime thanks to a 7-0 run.

Ceres outscored Golden Valley 15-12 in the third quarter. Wiedenbeck scored six of Ceres' third-quarter points.

Golden Valley outscored Ceres 16-9 in the fourth quarter.

Eight Ceres players scored.

Goblirsch, Wiedenbeck and Tate scored 11, 10 and seven points, respectively. Valencia, Arnold and Randy Atchison had six, five and four points. Schwark and Cunha added two points.

Seven Golden Valley players scored.

Reid Hershenbach made four 3-pointers and finished with a game-high 21 points. Jeff Castleton had 11 points, including three 3-pointers. Nate Rodriguez, Jorge Segura and Marvin Jefferson scored eight, seven and six points, respectively. Ryan Bennett and Kirk McMillin had four and two points.

The Bulldogs shot 61 percent (11-for-18) from the free-throw line.

The Cougars shot 56 percent (14-for-25) from the foul line.

Ceres plays host to Merced today and Golden Valley on Friday. Both games start at 7:15 p.m. - By DALE BUTLER / Staff Reporter of The Ceres (Calif.) Courier