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Dupree leads Bulldogs with 16 points to beat Knights
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Two minutes, 23 seconds. That's the amount of time it took the Ceres High varsity boys basketball team to turn a five-point deficit into a five-point lead in the second quarter against Modesto Metro Conference rival Downey Friday night at Ceres' Phil de la Porte Gymnasium.

The Knights never recovered from the momentum-swaying run, falling 55-44 to the host Bulldogs.

“Our whole team played good from the first minute to the last minute,” Ceres junior Kevin Dupree said.

More than 600 fans attended the homecoming game.

Ceres' student cheering section razzed Downey's contingent with several chants in the final minutes, including “Scoreboard! Scoreboard!”

“It feels good to have support,” Dupree said.

Dupree, sophomore Brett Sayad and junior Steven Downs had 16, 14 and 10 points apiece for the Bulldogs, who improved to 5-4 in the Modesto Metro Conference.

Zeph Tyson scored a game-high 20 points for the Knights, who fell to 2-6 in the league standings.

Ceres played with a sense of urgency.

“We couldn't afford to come out flat tonight,” Dupree said. “We had to win. We want to go up in the power rankings. We want to host a playoff game.”

The Bulldogs scored the final 10 points of the second quarter to open a 32-27 advantage.

Sayad had six points. He stole a pass near midcourt and drove for a crowd-pleasing two-handed dunk. He also buried a 14-foot jumper from the right side and converted a layup with 2.5 seconds remaining. Dupree added a three-point play. Muniz made one of his two free throws.

The Bulldogs broke the game open in the third quarter, outscoring the Knights 13-7, including 9-2 in the opening 4:16.

Sayad scored four points. He hit an 11-foot turnaround jumper from the right side and a 6-footer from the right baseline. Sayad also assisted on Matt Schwark's layup.

Dupree added three points, including a 13-footer from near the top of the key and one free throw.

Ceres will play host to Grace Davis today and Modesto High on Friday. Both games will get underway at 7:15 p.m. - By DALE BUTLER / Staff reporter of the Ceres (Calif.) Courier