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Bulldogs win one at Modesto JC
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The Ceres High varsity boys basketball team overcame a 14-point second-half deficit to defeat the Downey Knights, 47-42, in summer-league play on Thursday at Modesto Junior College.

"I thought we were going to lose," said Ceres sophomore forward Brett Sayad.

Added Ceres High assistant coach Brian de la Porte: "That's the first time we've beaten them in two years."

Sayad led the way with a team-high 14 points. Ross Tate tallied seven points. DaAron Grays, Bryant Hill and Steven Downs all scored five points. Kevin Dupree and Andrew Chipponeri had four and three points, respectively. Brad Muniz and Joe Gallo both added two points.

"The best thing about the game is that all nine players contributed," said Ceres head coach Jason Martin.

The Bulldogs improved to 5-4 in the Modesto JC standings. They won one of two games on Thursday.

"We started playing as a team in the second game," Sayad said. "We were playing too much one-on-one in the first game."

The comeback in Game 2 was impressive.

Ceres outscored Downey 29-17 in the second half, including 10-2 in the final 4:15. The Knights led 32-18 at the 14:30 mark.

Brad Muniz picked Downey's point guard and converted a layup to bring the Bulldogs within one point, 40-39, with 2:56 remaining.

Dupree scored a basket and Grays sank a 3-pointer from the right baseline to put Ceres ahead 44-40 with 1:11 left in regulation.

Chipponeri, Tate and Sayad helped seal the win. Chipponeri got a steal and made one foul shot. Tate grabbed an offensive rebound. Sayad buried two free throws.

Ceres trailed 25-18 at halftime. Sayad and Downs had 10 and four points, respectively. Dupree and Hill both scored two points. The Bulldogs shot 28 percent (9-for-32) from the field and committed six turnovers. Downey shot 30 percent (8-for-27) from the floor and committed just one turnover.

"We were giving up too many layups," Sayad said. "We weren't playing good defense."

Added Martin: "We decided to play defense and help each other out in the second half."

The Bulldogs forced 11 turnovers after intermission.

Jordan McDaniel knocked down eight 3-pointers and scored a game-high 33 points to lead East Union past Ceres High, 70-64, Thursday afternoon at Modesto JC.

Grays and Dupree both totaled 15 points for the Bulldogs, who outscored the Lancers 28-27 in the second half. Tate had eight points, Sayad and Gallo both added seven points, and Muniz scored five points.

Ceres trailed 43-36 at the break. McDaniel had 22 points, including six 3-pointers. - By DALE BUTLER / Staff reporter of the Ceres (Calif.) Courier