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Central Valley overcomes deficit, earns 2-2 draw with Ceres High
Dawgs blow 2-0 lead
Central Valley recognized six senior players during halftime of Thursdays crosstown showdown with Ceres High, including Mayra Duran. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Ceres High's and Central Valley's varsity girls soccer teams battled for bragging rights this past week.

The Hawks erased a two-goals-to-none deficit and salvaged a 2-2 tie with the visiting Bulldogs on Senior Night last Thursday.

Ceres High lost 1-0 to Central Valley earlier this season.

"I've played in games where we're up 3-0 and we lose 4-3," Hawks head coach Cyndi Meshach said. "A game is never over no matter what the score is. Anything can happen."

Central Valley (5-5-2) and Ceres High (4-6-2) placed fourth and fifth, respectively, in the Western Athletic Conference standings.

Jacqueline Gonzalez and Edith Peralta each scored one goal for Ceres High.

Ceres High goalkeeper Gisselle Madrigal made 13 saves.

Celeste Acebes and Martha Gonzalez had one goal apiece for the Hawks.

Emely Amaya and Elida Flores both tallied one assist.

Celest Lepe and Stephanie Lopez logged playing time at goalkeeper.

Lepe had one save in the opening half. Lopez totaled three saves after intermission.

Ceres High led 1-0 at halftime as Jacqueline Gonzalez lofted the ball into the top right corner of the goal.

Peralta increased the Bulldogs' lead to 2-0 early in the second half.

"Worried is kind of a strong word," Meshach said. "I was concerned."

Acebes cut the deficit to 2-1.

Martha Gonzalez accounted for the winning goal, which was scored with less than 15 minutes to play.

Cristina Arreola's presence on the field was missed during the second half. Arreola, one of Ceres High's top defenders, was relegated to the bench after colliding heads with Madrigal late in the first half.

"Everything changed," Bulldogs head coach Miguel Saldate stated. "It's not Central Valley's fault. The referee makes the final decision. He wouldn't let her back in the game. He said she had a concussion. I asked her how she was feeling. I wanted to make sure she was okay. She said she was fine and begged me to put her back in."

The contest was delayed for 10 minutes due to a gopher hole on the field. A custodian used several shovels full of dirt from a nearby softball field to fix the problem.

Central Valley recognized six upperclassmen during a special halftime ceremony, including Gonzalez, Rocio Beltran, Andrea Alvarez, Carina Partida, Emily Curry and Mayra Duran.

"I love these girls," Meshach said. "They've grown so much. They all have remarkable qualities."

The top three teams in the WAC advanced to the playoffs.

The Bulldogs and Hawks both fell short of their goal.

"It's frustrating," Saldate said. "We should have done better."

"That's what you play for," Meshach said. "We finished the season on a strong note."

Central Valley battled back from a 2-0 deficit on its way to tying its crosstown rival.

"It was a physical game," Meshach said.