Senior goalkeeper Martin Reyes walked with a noticeable limp prior to kickoff.
Slowed by a left knee injury, Reyes made 10 saves during the Ceres High varsity boys soccer team's surprisingly-easy 3-0 victory over crosstown-rival Central Valley on Sept. 28 at Bulldog Stadium.
"When he was warming up, it was hurting him," Bulldogs head coach Miguel Saldate said. "He still wanted to play. I feel a little more comfortable having him in the goalie box because of his experience."
Added Reyes: "I told him (coach Saldate) I was fine. It still bothered me. I had a little pain. I would have still played even if I was more injured."
Adrian Espinoza collected two goals and one assist for Ceres High, which improved to 9-4-2 overall and 2-3-0 in the Western Athletic Conference standings.
Bulldog teammates Osvaldo Padilla had one goal.
Enrique Garcia made three saves at goalkeeper for the Hawks (5-10-2, 1-4-0).
Ceres High seized the momentum with a three-goal barrage in the opening 15 minutes.
"I wish every half was like that," Saldate said. "It was a total surprise. They boys played really well. They did awesome."
Espinoza found the back of the net in the first and sixth minutes.
Adrian scored from close-range and 40 yards out on a free kick.
Espinoza assisted on Padilla's goal in the 14th minute.
"Adrian helped us a lot in the first half," Saldate said. "He's been injured, too. He's been in and out of the lineup."
"Scoring the first goal pumped us up and got us more motivated," Reyes added.
The two teams battled to a scoreless tie during the second half.
Ceres High totaled nine shots.
The Hawks and Bulldogs combined for 28 fouls.
Central Valley's Angel Lopez and Jose Yepez were both assessed yellow cards.
The Bulldogs improved their all-time record versus the Hawks to 3-10-5 last week.
"We want to win every game," Reyes said. "We're not just focused on beating Central Valley."
Ceres High and Central Valley tied twice last season.
The Bulldogs posted their second win against the Hawks during the 2011 season.
"To be honest with you, we haven't seen them play this year," Saldate said. "We didn't know what they had. Once we scored the first goal, I knew we'd do even better. We focus a little more when we play against Central Valley because they're our rivals."
"Injuries have been killing us," Reyes said. "Not having several starters makes a big difference. If we stay healthy, we'll have a chance (at making playoffs)."