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Dawgs grab first conference victory
Martino Bertolotti has been on a scoring tear for Ceres High's varsity boys basketball team since the start of Valley Oak League play. The senior guard had 19 points as the Bulldogs snapped a three-game losing streak by beating visiting Oakdale, 60-38, Friday night in front of a large homecoming crowd at Phil de la Porte Gymnasium.

"Everybody has freedom in our offense," said Brian de la Porte, first-year head coach. "He's just caught fire. I hope it continues. That would be awesome."

Bertolotti totaled 81 points and eight treys through Ceres High's first four league games.

Martino scored 23 points against Manteca and Sierra, and 16 versus East Union while filling the sixth-man role.

"He's just elevated his game to another level," de la Porte said. "He's taken on the leadership role."

It took two weeks, but Ceres High (6-10, 1-3 VOL) finally secured its first conference win.

Bertolotti provided the spark against the Mustangs (1-14, 0-4 VOL).

Bulldogs teammates Justin Canatsy, Lance Hunter, Brandon Avila, Scott Meyer, Tony Bradford and Mark Schwark provided assistance.

Canatsy tallied 12 points. Hunter and Avila added six points each. Meyer scored five points. Bradford and Schwark both contributed two points.

Ceres High dominated Oakdale during the first three quarters. The Bulldogs held a 46-18 lead heading into the final period.

"I thought we played well together," de la Porte said. "Our pressure bothered them."

Ceres High took care of business against overmatched Oakdale.

"We did what we should have done," said de la Porte, who cleared his bench with six minutes left in regulation. "The kids did a great job."

Sophomores suffer first loss

Ceres Highl's sophomore boys basketball team surrendered a season-high 35 points in the first half and was outscored 12-0 down the stretch in a 60-54 Valley Oak League setback to Oakdale on Friday at Phil de la Porte Gymnasium.

"We didn't play any defense on top or underneath," Bulldogs head coach Jim Pernetti said.

The loss was the first of the season for Ceres High, which won its previous 14 games. The Mustangs moved into a first-place tie with the Bulldogs in conference play at 4-1.

"We thought the streak was going to keep going," Ceres High guard Edgar Lopez said. "We got too confident."

Lopez tallied 17 of his game-high 20 points in the opening 16 minutes. Ruminder Dhillon had nine points. Beau Pimentel and Dustin Baisdon both scored eight points. Tyler Cummings contributed five points. Tyler Brenning and John Dhillon collected two points each.

Oakdale post player Jake Martinez had his way inside against Ceres High with 19 points.

Mustang guard Vince Thompson added 18.

The Bulldogs extended their lead to six points at 54-48 with a 7-3 run in the opening 4 minutes and 13 seconds of the fourth quarter.

Oakdale responded with 12 straight points the rest of the way to stun Ceres High.

"We didn't run our offense at the end," Lopez said. "We took bad shots. They executed and we didn't."

Added Pernetti: "We'll bounce back."