By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
CV suffers first football loss
For three quarters, Central Valley High School's varsity football team challenged defending Sac-Joaquin Section Division V champion Hilmar.

The upset-minded Hawks unraveled with stunning swiftness in the fourth quarter beneath a flurry of turnovers and a special teams breakdown Friday night to lose 35-14 to the host Yellowjackets.

"The game was a lot closer than the scoreboard shows," Central Valley lineman Patrick Smith said. "Both teams played hard. We'll be fine in league."

Tied at 14-all, Hilmar (3-0) scored two touchdowns off Hawk turnovers and returned a punt 84 yards for a score to pull away in the final quarter.

"You can't beat a good team like that when you make huge mistakes," Central Valley head coach Tim Garcia said.

The Hawks took a 7-0 lead less than three minutes into the game on Jesse Hatfield's 54-yard TD pass to Greg Mathews, who broke two tackles on his way into the end zone.

Forced to punt on its subsequent possession, Hilmar got the ball back after it hit a Central Valley player. The Yellowjackets capitalized with an 11-play, 60-yard scoring drive. Quarterback Quinton McCown found his way into the end zone on a 1-yard sneak.

McCown threw a 44-yard TD pass to Issac Diaz in the second quarter.

Hawk tailback Vince Lopez's 7-yard TD run and Daniel Ochoa's second point-after kick evened the score at 14-all in the third quarter. Lopez finished with 128 rushing yards on 28 carries.

On the verge of collecting its biggest win in program history, Central Valley struggled mightily over the final 12 minutes of play.

The Hawks surrendered TD runs of 4 and 15 yards to Diaz.

Older brother Carlos broke free for an 84-yard punt return touchdown.

"It's definitely a tough loss," Lopez said. "We know we could have won. I think we earned a lot of respect tonight. But the paper won't show it. The people that were here witnessed it."

"We were playing hard all game," Smith added. "Then everyone lost it. It was an avalanche of mistakes."

Central Valley finished the preseason with a 2-1 record.

The Hawks begin conference play with a home game against two-time defending VOL champion Oakdale (3-0) this Friday at Bulldog Stadium. Kickoff slated for 7:15 p.m.

JV Hawks lose

Central Valley High School junior-varsity football coach Antone Lopez knew it would take a flawless performance to beat Hilmar in their Week 3 preseason match-up on Friday.

The Hawks fell behind 16-0 in the first quarter and never recovered in losing 30-14 to the host Yellowjackets.

"That's probably the best team we'll play all year," Lopez said. "They've been blowing people out. If they don't go undefeated, they'll be close."

Central Valley finished the preseason with a 2-1 record. The Hawks beat Le Grand and Bret Harte.

"I'm proud of my kids," Lopez said.

Central Valley faced a 23-8 halftime deficit during last week's loss.

Hilmar scored twice off Hawk turnovers in the opening quarter.

Abraham Navarro and Joel Jimenez accounted for Central Valley's touchdown. Navarro threw a 2-yard pass to Jimenez with 21 seconds remaining in the second quarter.

Abraham tossed a 15-yard TD strike to Greg Tripp in the final minute of the fourth quarter. Jimenez helped set up the score with a 35-yard reception along Central Valley's sideline.

"We were prepared," Tripp said. "But we didn't come out fired up. We still played really good."

"We knew what we were up against," Lopez added. "We saw the film. We needed to play perfect to win and we didn't. If we limit our mistakes, we're in that game."

Central Valley will play host to Oakdale in a Valley Oak League opener this Friday at Bulldog Stadium. The contest will begin at 5 p.m.