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Busy week for Dawgs
CHS girls play Livingston twice, El Capitan once
Nicole Bates totaled a team-leading 44 points during Ceres Highs three league games last week. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Ceres High School's varsity girls basketball team topped El Capitan once and lost twice to Livingston this past week.

Livingston earned a Western Athletic Conference series sweep of Ceres High with a 49-33 road win Thursday evening.

The fourth-place Bulldogs dropped to 12-9 overall and 4-4 in the WAC standings.

The second-place Wolves improved to 15-7 and 7-1.

"We had to play Livingston two times in a week," Ceres High head coach Kristen McClure said. "We got a bad draw. I honestly think they're the best team in the league."

Bulldog Nicote Bates scored a team-high 15 points against the Wolves during the second meeting.

Jessica Arreola added nine points.

Kaylee Holloway and Mahlena O'Neal collected three points each.

Leena Bassi tallied two points.

Natalia Cortez had one point.

The Bulldogs never recovered after falling behind 29-6 in the opening period. The Wolves buried six 3-pointers.

"We dug ourselves a big hole in the first quarter," McClure said. "We played so much better in the second half. I'm proud of my girls. They played hard until the end."

Ceres High returned home with a 39-38 victory following its battle with host El Capitan on Jan. 26.
Bates led the Bulldogs' scoring attack with 18 points.

Arreola, Holloway, Cortez and Jasmine Moore tallied 12, four, three and two points, respectively.

The Bulldogs led 30-24 at the end of the third quarter.

El Capitan (1-7 WAC) outscored Ceres High 14-9 in the final period.
The Bulldogs shot 69 percent (9 of 13) from the free-throw line for the game.

Ceres High converted six of its first seven foul shots.

Ceres High lost 51-27 at Livingston on Jan. 25.

Bates totaled a team-high 11 points.

Holloway had eight points.

Bassi and Cortez both scored three points.

Arreola added two points.

The Bulldogs trailed 28-7 at halftime.

Ceres High will close out the WAC season with games against Los Banos, Central Valley, Patterson and Pacheco.

"I think they'll respond well," McClure said. ""If we play the way I know we can, we'll have a chance to win our final four games. We just got to keep pushing ourselves and playing hard. Every team wants to go to the playoffs. We've already had a better season than last year."