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Ex-Hawk leads Bulldogs to win over Beyer
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Pedro Gomez transferred from Central Valley to Ceres High last spring.

Gomez was cleared to play varsity boys soccer this fall on Aug. 31. The California Interscholastic Federation made the ruling.

It didn't take long for Pedro to make his presence felt as the speedy senior collected one goal and two assists in the Bulldogs' thrilling 6-5 win over Beyer on Wednesday in Modesto.

"I was a little nervous," said Gomez, who earned Valley Oak League second-team honors while starring at Central Valley as a sophomore. "This is my first game at Ceres High School. I want to show them I have talent. I didn't show them what I'm capable of."

"He's the compete package," Ceres High head coach Koeurn Phe said. "He can play anywhere on the field. The way he reads the defense and attacks, he's like a running back. He's in a league of his own."

The non-league season-opening contest between the Bulldogs and Patriots featured multiple ties and lead changes.

Luis Martinez scored a game-high two goals for Ceres High. David Estrada, Marcos Rochas and Luis Corona finished with one goal apiece.

Corona was mobbed by teammates after tallying the game-winning goal via a corner kick with less than one minute to play. Luis just missed scoring earlier when he fired a shot off the left post.

The two teams battled to a 2-2 tie in the first half.

Alejandro Castro and Cesar Hurtado assisted on Martinez's goals.

"We didn't play our best game, but we found a way to win," Phe said. "That's what good teams do."

The Bulldogs underestimated the Patriots according to Gomez.

"We should have done better," said Pedro, who last played in an organized soccer game for the Turlock Tornadoes 18-and-under squad in the finals of the CYSA North State Cup in May. "I think we got overconfident."

Gomez excelled in his first game since transferring from Central Valley. He was a spectator at Hawk and Bulldog contests a season ago.

"I went to most of their games last year," Pedro said. "It was tough watching."