The members of Ceres High's and Central Valley's varsity boys golf teams waited anxiously behind River Oaks' clubhouse as their head coaches tabulated the final score.
"We made sure we had everything right," Bulldogs leader Scott Smith said. "We always double check. We knew it was going to be close again. Our first match came down to the end too."
The Bulldogs edged the Hawks by one stroke, 211-212, last Thursday.
Ceres High improved its head-to-head record versus Central Valley to 14-0.
The Bulldogs beat the Hawks twice this year, winning by a combined four strokes.
Central Valley topped Ceres High 496-500 at the WAC Mid-Season Tournament.
"It was close," Hawks star golfer Anthony Bonales said. "When we saw the outcome, it sucked. We still have the WAC end-of-year tournament. Whoever places higher at league finals, that determines who gets into playoffs. I know we can do it. It would mean a lot to our team. We've already achieved so much in so little time. Coach (Mike Holliday) has pushed us so hard."
"We kept our streak alive," Smith said. "That's the only thing that was at stake. It's not a cut-throat rivalry like some of the other sports. We all get along."
Ceres High took over sole possession of third place in the WAC (8-4).
Central Valley (6-5) dropped to fourth.
Bonales fired a 1-over-par 32 against the Bulldogs.
Hawk teammates Jacob Craig, Cameron Ahart, Adrian Arellano and Carlos Alfonso shot 36, 46, 48 and 50, respectively.
Ian Couture and Blake Hurst carded 9-over-par 40s for Ceres High.
Dylan Lake had a 43.
Dominic Durossette and Matt Thornberry posted identical rounds of 44.
The Bulldogs trailed by 12 strokes after the No. 1 and 2 players from both teams completed their rounds during last week's matchup.
"We were so close today," Bonales said. "We just have to play a little better to beat Ceres High."
Ceres High and Central Valley will battle for the WAC's final playoff berth today at the conference's year-end tourney at Stevinson Ranch Golf Course.
"The pressure is on us because we're trying to make it into team playoffs for the third year in a row," Smith said. "It could go either way."
"Our whole team can go to the postseason," Bonales said. "It's going to come down to the league finals."