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Ceres Seahawks
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It's 6:30 p.m. on Thursday. Blaker-Kinser Jr. High's parking lot is full. Ceres Seahawks co-founder and president Javier Fregoso says he's not surprised by the high turnout.

"Everything that has happened is what I envisioned," he said.

Approximately 133 members of the youth football and cheer organization, ranging in age from 5 to 14, attended the 90-minute mini-camp. They toiled in the sun from 6-7:30 p.m.

"That's almost all of the kids," Fregoso said.

Coaches began laying the groundwork for a successful inaugural season.

About 92 players worked with head coaches Joe Borba (varsity), Andre Smith (junior varsity), Dave Loveland (pee wee) and Sonny Ogden (rookies). Assistants also helped out.

"I'm just amazed with the turnout," Borba said. "It's incredible."

Approximately 41 cheerleaders received instruction from coaches Danielle Kimura (varsity), Yvette Andrade (junior varsity), Sara Partida (pee wee) and Kari Ogden (rookies). They utilized the blacktop and grass area near the gymnasium.

All four squads will perform at a Modesto Nuts game on Aug. 3. They will attend JAMZ Camp at Stanislaus State, Aug. 11-12.

"They're just all doing awesome," said Andrade, who also handles cheer director duties. "I can't even emphasize how shocked I am at where they're at at this time of the season. We are even contemplating doing a competition this year. Everybody's really excited and anxious to get started."

Fregoso, Andrade and Mike Broderick founded the Ceres Seahawks in January.

The non-profit organization has raised close to $75,000 since its inception. That helps pay for equipment and insurance among other things.

Whitmore Chiropractic offered physicals at a reduced price, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., on July 14.

"It's overwhelming to see the response we got from the community," Fregoso said. "We started with a $100 donation from a parent."

The Seahawks joined the Atwater-based Cen-Cal Jr. Football League on Feb. 7.

"They made our transition real easy," Fregoso said.

Ceres will play an 11-game schedule, beginning on Aug. 25

The Seahawks will participate in an NFC round-robin scrimmage at Somerset Middle School the week before the season opener.

First practices will be held on July 30, from 6-8 p.m. Uniforms and gear will be handed out on Aug. 4.

Ceres' enrollment currently stands at 205, including 164 football players and 41 cheerleaders.

"We're still getting a lot of phone calls. But we've been full since March," Fregoso said. "We've done a lot of leg work. We look to be the premiere team in Ceres."

Ceres' executive board consists of Fregosi, Andrade, Broderick (vice president), Rachelle Garrett (treasurer), Beth Bell (fundraising coordinator), Mike Bell (administrative coordinator), Brad Garrett (safety coordinator), Curtis Snell (athletic coordinator), Kim Cervantez (secretary), Terika Ramsdell (advertising coordinator) and Alex Lopez (sergeant at arms).