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CHS falls in overtime
Ceres High School's varsity football team appeared to be headed for its first victory of the year.

But four costly turnovers in an eight-plus-minute span of the fourth quarter allowed Downey to extend the preseason game.

The Knights knocked off the Bulldogs 35-28 in overtime in front of a noisy crowd Friday night in Ceres. Downey players couldn't contain their excitement following the back-and-forth contest.

"That should have been my group celebrating," Ceres High head coach Brett Johnson said. "It's very painful. Not a lot of fun."

Added Bulldogs senior all-purpose player Chris Green: "It hurts deep down inside to know that should have been us. We still believe we can be successful. We just need to work harder at practice."

Ceres High senior quarterback Josh Edwards completed 16 of 26 passes for 196 yards with three touchdowns and three interceptions.

Senior receiver Justin Canatsy tallied TD receptions of 46 and 7 yards.

Senior tight end Kyle Cerny had a 12-yard receiving score.

Junior running back Brent Ward gained a career-high 154 yards on 20 carries.

Green ran for 79 yards on 15 carries.

Vince Tomao added a 1-yard rushing touchdown.

"We should have definitely won," Edwards said. "It came down to who made the least mistakes. It hurts right now, but we have next week. We still have a lot of loose ends we need to tie up."

The Bulldogs won the toss and deferred in overtime.

It didn't take Downey long to score as Jason Lee tossed a 10-yard touchdown pass to Javon Kelly on first down.

Following three straight runs, Edwards' fourth-down pass to Nick Sandoval fell incomplete. Josh and several of his teammates dropped to their knees in agony.

Ceres High's final drive in regulation ended when Jacob Hackett picked off Edwards inside Downey's 15-yard line with less than 10 seconds to play.

The Bulldogs could have attempted a 42-yard field goal. Cerny, Ceres High's strong-legged kicker, was left wondering what might have been.

"We tried to get him a little better position," Johnson said. "It didn't quite work out."

In the end, Ceres High lost because it failed to protect the ball. "The kids should be disappointed," Johnson said. "But there was positives. They improved from last week."

"It would have been nice to win," Green said. "It was right there for us to take it. When we get it clicking on all cylinders, I believe we can hang with the best."

Ceres High opened the 2009 season with an embarrassing 51-7 loss to Davis.

JV Bulldogs surive

Nick Welsh did just about everything for Ceres High School's junior-varsity football squad on Friday.

The all-purpose player returned an interception for a score, tossed a touchdown pass, accounted for a two-point conversion and kicked a pair of extra points in Friday's 28-14 preseason victory over the Downey Knights.

Ceres improved to 2-0 on the year. The Bulldogs continue to win despite being plagued by a lack of depth.

"Our team has a lot of heart," Nick said.

Ceres grabbed a commanding 21-0 lead in the opening half.

Jr. Moniz scored on a 6-yard run, Welsh had a 100-yard interception return and Zach Naylor added a 13-yard rushing TD.

"That's my biggest highlight since I've played high school football," Nick said.

The Bulldogs sealed the victory when Welsh hit a wide-open Raya for a 60-yard TD with less than a minute to play.