Ceres High’s varsity football team snapped a 10-game losing streak dating back to last season with a 44-21 win over Beyer in Western Athletic Conference play Friday night at Bulldog Stadium.
The Bulldogs also secured their first victory under first-year head coach Matt Chachere’s guidance last week.
“I’m glad it finally happened,” Chachere said. “I’m just happy for my players and coaches.”
“We were motivated. We were tired of losing.”Ceres High senior running back/linebacker Felipe Martinez
“We were motivated,” Ceres High senior running back/linebacker Felipe Martinez said. “We were tired of losing.”
Second-place Ceres High improved to 1-4 overall and 1-1 in the WAC standings.
Last-place Beyer dropped to 0-5 and 0-2.
“We gained some confidence and momentum going into the Johansen game,” Chachere said. “Hopefully, we keep it going.”
“It feels like a fresh start,” Martinez added.
The Bulldogs set season-high marks for points (44), touchdowns (6), total yards (431), rushing yards (257) and passing yards (174) in a single game against the Patriots.
Ceres High was outscored 123-14 through its first four games.
“It starts with the offensive line,” Chachere said. “They were blocking down field and pulling correctly. We’re finally seeing some progress there.”
Isaac Vizcaino, a transfer from Modesto High, tossed three touchdown passes and no interceptions while making his debut at quarterback with Ceres High.
He also rushed for 39 yards and one score on eight carries.
Vizcaino sat out the first four games to satisfy the CIF’s transfer rule.
"I’m happy I did well but I know I can do even better.”Isaac Vizcaino
“I was prepared,” he said. “I’ve been working hard since this summer. I’m happy I did well but I know I can do even better.”
“He (Isaac) showed a lot of poise,” Chachere said. “He was able to adlib and make plays. He’s just going to get better.”
Felipe Martinez carried the ball 13 times for a career-high 164 yards and two touchdowns.
He also hauled in a 15-yard TD pass from Vizcaino.
Martinez logged playing time at quarterback during three of Ceres High’s first four games.
He replaced Clayton Taylor, who suffered a year-ending leg injury in the Bulldogs’ season-opening loss to Central Valley.
“I commend Felipe for playing quarterback,” Chachere said. “He was itching to get back to his natural position. He wore that defense down. They could not tackle him.”
“I got back to what I’m comfortable doing,” Martinez said.
Brandan Cordeiro added 33 yards on five carries.
Angel Padilla caught two passes for 64 yards and one TD.
Andrew Alcala totaled 60 yards and one touchdown on two receptions.
Fernando Sosa finished with 30 yards on two catches.
Elias Saldana, Moises Montalvo, Argel Arroyo, John Estrada, Josh Garcia, Nathan Barrows and Joshua Ofisa logged playing time on the Bulldogs’ offensive line.
“I’ve never seen our offensive line push off that hard,” Martinez said. “They wanted this game more than anybody else.”
Added Chachere: “It’s the first time all season where our offensive line executed proper blocks.”
Ceres High erased a two-touchdown deficit en route to salvaging a 14-14 tie with Beyer in the first half.
“I wasn’t concerned,” Vizcaino said. “I knew we’d come back. It was just a matter of us being patient.”
The Bulldogs outscored the Patriots 30-7 during the second half, including 23-0 in the momentum-swaying third quarter.
“We played well on both sides of the ball,” Chachere said. “We did a lot of things well. The players seemed very focused. It started with practice.”
“We worked hard every minute of the game,” Martinez said.
“We finally showed what we’re capable of,” Vizcaino said.
Chachere was doused with water as his team celebrated its first victory of the 2018 season.
“It’s one of the best feelings we’ve had all season,” Martinez said. “Coach was just as excited as we were.”
Ceres High will host Johansen (1-4, 0-2) this Friday.
The Homecoming game will get underway at 7 p.m.
“If we win, it’s going to create big momentum for us the rest of the season,” Martinez said. “We’re hoping the possibility opens up where we can make playoffs.”
The Bulldogs will have to win their final five games to receive postseason consideration.
Ceres High last participated in the playoffs in 2004.
“We have a tall order ahead of us,” Chachere said. “It’s going to be a challenge. Johansen’s our most important game because it’s our next one.”
“We’ll control what we can control,” Martinez stated. “That’s our whole thought process.”
“We finally have a sense of hope,” Vizcaino added. “Our expectation is to win league. I believe that’s possible to do.”