By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Bulldogs, Hawk players practice social distancing
Francisco Padilla
Senior Francisco Padilla tosses a medicine ball to a Central Valley football teammate during Monday’s strength and conditioning session outside the school’s weight room. - photo by Dale Butler

Returning and prospective members of Central Valley High School’s football program sanitized weight-room equipment thoroughly before and after each use during Monday’s strength-training session.

Social distancing was practiced to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

“We’re allowed to use the weight room but we only let six kids go in at a time,” head coach Derrick Goblirsch said. “And they have to wear a mask when they’re inside.”

“Building strength is a huge step for any football program,” he added.

Hawk players will continue to work out, from 3:30-5 p.m., on Mondays and Wednesdays.

They dedicate time to weight training, conditioning and football-specific skill drills.

They meet with Central Valley coaches via Zoom on Tuesdays and Fridays.

“Our numbers have been consistent,” Goblirsch said. We’re progressing well. The guys are learning a new offense. The defense is a little different. They’re working hard.”

Ceres High football players also followed COVID-19 safety protocols during their 6-8 a.m. strength, conditioning and football-specific skill workouts last Thursday and Wednesday.

“We have certain guidelines we have to follow,” Bulldogs’ head coach Clinton Goblirsch said. “The guys are broken up into groups and rotated around. They’re split up to minimize the size of groups. We try to do as much stuff as we can outside. Masks have to be worn any time we’re inside.”

“Being able to use equipment (weights and footballs) was great,” Ceres High senior Amare Padilla stated. “The energy level was higher. Everyone was excited to compete and showcase what they can do. Everyone was focused.”

“The guys are committed to wanting to get better and trying to turn things around,” Clinton Goblirsch added. “They’re dedicated. We’ve been averaging 60-65 players for all three levels.”

Student-athletes from Ceres Unified School District’s two public high schools were given the green light to resume conditioning workouts on campus on Sept. 21.

Extracurricular activities, including sports, had been suspended until further notice on July 13 due to a spike in COVID-19 cases in Stanislaus County.

The start of the 2019 high school football campaign was moved from Aug. 21 to Jan. 8 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

COVID-19 benchmarks must be met prior to the season getting underway.

“The CIF is waiting to see what happens,” Derrick Goblirsch said. “It’s bigger than us. It’s out of our control. We’ll keep preparing as if we’re having a season.”

“I think we’re going to have a season,” Padilla said. “I’m very optimistic.”

“We don’t make that decision,” Clinton Goblirsch said. “We’ll be ready.”

Elijah De Leon
Hawk junior Elijah De Leon does pushups outside Central Valley High School’s weight room. - photo by Dale Butler