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CHS volleyball dominates first home opponent
Ceres High School's varsity volleyball team provided plenty of entertainment during its first home match last week.

The Bulldogs rolled to a 25-19, 25-14, 25-15 victory over the Downey Knights in front of a good-sized crowd on Tuesday, Sept. 1 at Phil de la Porte Gymnasium.

"It's a lot of fun when he have people cheering for us," Ceres High standout Jamie Beck said. "I'm pretty pleased with our performance. Everyone was talking on the court today. We've improved so much from last year."

Beck dominated with her all-round play. The 6-foot-2-inch junior led the Bulldogs with eight kills, nine aces, two blocks and one assist. Ceres High fans shouted "Boom!" each time Jamie pounded the ball over the net.

"I just love hitting," she said. "It gets my adrenaline going."

Added Bulldogs head coach Stephanie Hamilton: "It takes a great team behind her to get those balls to her."

Jode Johnson tallied five digs, two blocks and one kill for the Ceres High.

Kaela Causey added seven assists, five digs, three aces and one kill. Leah Rose and Rachel Nevarez accumulated five and four aces, respectively. Alyssa Eudy had five digs and one kill.

The Bulldogs had multiple contributors en route to scoring 12 of the first 13 points in Game 1.

"They were hyped up," Hamilton said. "If we would have stayed that way (the entire contest), we would have smashed that team."

Beck's powerful serve ricocheted off a Downey player, sailed high into the air and landed on the ground during match point of Game 3.

Ceres High opened the season with a third-place finish at the Johansen tournament on Saturday, Aug. 29.

The Bulldogs will begin the Valley Oak League portion of their schedule with a home contest against Sonora on Sept. 14.

Ceres High, Central Valley, Oakdale, Sonora, East Union, Manteca, Sierra and Weston Ranch will be vying Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoff berths along with 26 teams from 11 other conferences. Sixteen schools will be represented at the tournament.

"I'd be pretty disappointed if we didn't make it because the talent's there," Beck said. "We should have a good chance."