The spring sports season was filled with many highlights. Now's the perfect time to recollect and celebrate.
Top male athlete: Ceres High varsity boys tennis star Nolan McCaig advanced to the semifinals of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-II singles tournament. McCaig, a finalist his sophomore and freshman years, won two of three matches. Nolan made history by becoming the Bulldogs' first-ever three-time conference champion. McCaig, 21-1 overall and 16-0 in Western Athletic Conference play, helped lead Ceres High to its seventh straight playoff berth. He was voted WAC Most Valuable Player for the third year in a row.
Top female athlete: Nicole Bates, arguably Ceres High's all-time greatest softball player, added to her already-impressive resume. The University of Washington-signee was named Cal-Hi Sports Ms. Softball State and Medium Schools Player of the Year. She was selected to the Cal-Hi Sports All-State Super Elite and Medium Schools First Teams. Bates earned FloSoftball All-American First-Team honors and PGF West Regional All-American Team accolades. She also earned membership to the Louisville Slugger Hit Club, which recognizes 11 of the nation's top hitters. Bates attended the club's skills competition and instruction clinic, July 30 to Aug. 1, in Huntington Beach. Nicole batted .571 from the plate with five homers, four triples, nine doubles, 33 RBIs, 45 runs and 14 stolen bases during her final season with the Bulldogs.
Male newcomer: Gary Condit was the top player on Ceres High's Western Athletic Conference-championship boys golf team. Just a freshman, Condit nearly claimed the WAC Most Valuable Player award. Condit ranked second in the conference's individual standings with a slope and rating average of 5.69. El Capitan's Chris Giardina edged out Condit by .12 points for the MVP honors. Condit outshot Giardina twice during the WAC dual season. He also outplayed Giardina at the conference's year-end tournament. Gary took first. Condit and Giardina tied for fifth at the WAC mid-season tourney.
Female newcomer: Callie Nunes split time at pitcher during her first season with Ceres High's varsity softball team in 2015. Nunes was the Bulldogs' ace in the circle this year. The junior posted an impressive 20-3 overall record with a 1.14 ERA, 239 strikeouts, two no-hitters and 10 shutouts. Callie shined on the biggest stage as Ceres High won five of six games en route to capturing the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III title. Callie matched a career high for strikeouts with 17 during third-seeded Ceres High's 5-3 win over No. 2 Oakdale in the quarterfinals. The Bulldogs lost twice to the Mustangs during the regular season. Nunes was voted Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year.
Coach: Angela Durossette pushed all the right buttons in leading Ceres High's softball program to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III crown. The Bulldogs compiled a 23-5 overall record and won 11 of 12 games on their way to a first-place finish in the Western Athletic Conference standings.
Team: Ceres High's softball team captured its second section title in program history. The third-seeded Bulldogs ended a 21-year drought between championships by edging out No. 5 Benicia 3-2 in the Division-III finals.
Game: Ceres High's softball squad outlasted Benicia 3-2 in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III finals at the Sacramento Softball Complex, the same site where the Bulldogs captured their first section crown in 1995.Ceres High pitcher Callie Nunes allowed two runs and six hits with nine strikeouts and two walks in seven innings. Nicole Bates accounted for three of the Bulldogs' six hits. Bates doubled once, singled twice and scored once. Nunes and sophomore Andrea Duran both drove in one run. Senior Sabrina Baisdon batted 1-for-3 with one run. Junior Natalia Cortez tallied one run. Senior Mackenzie Veuve and junior Rayohna Sagapolu chipped in with one single apiece. Ceres High played flawless defense as Baisdon had four putouts in centerfield. Bates secured the victory with an unassisted double play.
Honorable mention: Ceres High's Mahlena O'Neal (softball), Rayohna Sagapolu (softball), Mackenzie Veuve (softball), Sabrina Baisdon (softball), Jessica Arreola (softball), Karina Torrez (girls soccer), Breanna Moreno (girls soccer), Cristina Arreola (girls soccer), Mariah Trevino (girls soccer), Ciana Sather (girls swimming), Julia Pata (girls swimming/girls track and field), Sydney Elness (girls track and field), Azia Brewster (girls track and field), Seth Gibson (boys track and field), Conner Johnson (boys track and field), Austin Stiles (boys track and field) Adrian Lujan (baseball), Ismael Ontiveros (baseball), Jayden Panyanouvong (boys golf), Jake Nevarez (boys golf), Donnavin Koeurn (boys tennis), Cristian Garcia (boys volleyball), Austin Crain (boys volleyball) and Wyatt Ogden (boys volleyball), and Central Valley's Nayeli Pelayo (softball), Evelyn Andrade (girls soccer), Mariana Garibay (girls soccer), Nicole Munoz (girls soccer), Jocelyn Lopez (girls soccer), Abigail Martinez (girls soccer), Mixtly Vega (girls soccer), Jacquelyn Sanchez (girls soccer), Leilani Ortiz (girls swimming), Mahogany Simon (girls track and field), Gilberto Alvarez (boys track and field), Mikie Lopez (baseball), Carlos Rodriguez (baseball), Noah Postley (boys golf) and Ruben Morales (boys tennis).