The members of Ceres High School's varsity football program had huge smiles on their faces following Saturday's scrimmage at Bulldog Stadium.
"All it did was prove how much work we put in during the offseason," Ceres High senior quarterback Brad Bussard said. "We had a great scrimmage today. We competed. We proved we're a team to be watched this year."
The Bulldogs compiled a 1-2-1 record.
Ceres High beat crosstown-rival Central Valley, 24-6.
Johnni Smith-Willis, Aaron Black, Brad Bussard and Juan Anderson led the way.
Smith-Willis had two rushing touchdowns.
Black scored once on the ground.
Johnni and Aaron are first-year varsity players.
Bussard connected with Anderson on a scoring play.
Sophomore quarterback Gerardo Solorzano and senior Manuel Garcia accounted for the Hawks' lone TD.
"We took away their pride," Bussard said.
Central Valley and Edison of Fresno battled to a 12-12 tie.
Smith-Willis and Black both scored once on the ground.
Ceres High lost 12-6 to Modesto Christian.
Smith-Willis accounted for the Bulldogs' touchdown.
Modesto High posted a 12-0 victory over Ceres High.
"My offensive line did really well," Smith-Willis said. "Without them, I wouldn't get all these TDs."
Ceres High's four opponents totaled just seven touchdowns.
The Bulldogs ranked sixth in points allowed in the Western Athletic Conference last year.
"No one expects that out of our defense," Bussard said. "It's night and day. It was a great performance overall."
Central Valley, looking to establish a new identity under first-year head coach Scott Edwards' guidance, experienced its share of up and downs while competing against Ceres High, Modesto High, Modesto Christian and Edison.
The Hawks are moving forward without Ja'Quan Gardner and Kendel Johnson. The 2014 Central Valley grads racked up 4,469 all-purpose yards and 51 touchdowns in 2013.
Sophomore Gerardo Solorzano took the majority of snaps at quarterback this past weekend.
Junior Moses Ghiorso was the Hawks' featured running back. "It's just a scrimmage," Solorzano said. "It doesn't mean a lot. We're going to improve."