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CHS grad enrolls at Modesto JC
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Mikey Sandberg moved back into his parents' house in Ceres in June. The 2003 Ceres High grad spent the past year at Mendocino College in Ukiah. He suited up for the Eagles football team.

"I don't regret what I did," Sandberg said.

"The decision was easy. Up there, I was never settled. It wasn't home. It was like I was at a camping trip."

Sandberg doesn't regret enrolling at Mendocino College out of high school. He said he had a blast playing football. He learned a lot from head coach Tom Gang. Gang used to teach P.E. and coach at Ceres High School.

"I got to experience college-level football," he said. "I did what I had to do. I had fun. Coach Gang taught us a lot. He was like a drill sergeant. He got us in shape. I got a lot of respect for that man. I thank him for everything he did for me."

If Sandberg stayed at Mendocino College, he'd be vying for the starting quarterback position this season. But he wouldn't be able to play baseball in the spring.

"I'm a diamond rat," Sandberg said. "I got to get back on that field."

Sandberg tried out for the Mendocino College baseball team this past season. He was released after just two weeks.

"It woke me up," Sandberg said. "It was a reality check. It was my first year of not doing anything with baseball. I've been playing since I was four."

Sandberg said he got cut because he didn't attend workouts in the fall and winter. He couldn't because he had another commitment--football.

"I was working just as hard," Sandberg said.

Two months ago, Sandberg attended an Atlanta Braves showcase at Modesto Junior College. More than 200 local players, aged 14-26, performed in front of scouts.

"I ended up turning a couple of heads," he said.

Sandberg also talked with Modesto JC baseball coach Bo Aiello.

"Hopefully, Bo will give me a chance to get back on the field," Sandberg said. "I don't expect him to give me anything. I'll make it happen."

Sandberg worked out with the Pirates this summer. He was sidelined for the final three weeks after sustaining a right wrist injury. Sandberg chipped a bone and tore ligaments.

"We start practicing again as soon as school starts," he said.

Fall classes begin on Aug. 29. Sandberg will major in psychology.

"I'd like to be a counselor and coach," he said.

Sandberg's life revolves around baseball. His parents own Slump Buster Batting Cages at Pedretti Sports Complex in Turlock. Sandberg works Monday through Friday, from 5-9 p.m. He also works every other weekend.

Sandberg offers hitting lessons.

"I do what I love all day," he said. "Baseball."

When Sandberg has time off, he volunteers at Blaker-Kinser Jr. High School, practice site for the Ceres Falcons youth football teams.

"I've been helping out," Sandberg said. "I have a little nephew out there."

Sandberg starred in baseball and football at Ceres High School.

He helped lead the varsity baseball team to a second-place finish in the Central California Conference and into the playoffs for the first time in 10 years as a junior.

Sandberg earned second-team, all-league honors while playing for the varsity football team during his senior year. The Stanislaus District's third-rated quarterback helped the Bulldogs secure a winning season in league and .500 overall record for the first time in eight years.

Sandberg completed 52 percent of his passes for 1,840 yards and nine touchdowns for Ceres, which went 5-5 overall, 5-4 in the CCC. - By DALE BUTLER / Staff reporter of the Ceres (Calif.) Courier