The Ceres High varsity football team’s 35-0 season-opening loss to crosstown-rival Central Valley was devastating in a number of ways.
The Bulldogs lost to the Hawks for the fourth year in a row and 11th time in 13 meetings.
Ceres High had two key players suffer year-ending leg injuries.
“Those injuries hurt more than the loss."Ceres High first-year head coach Matt Chachere
“Those injuries hurt more than the loss,” Ceres High first-year head coach Matt Chachere said. “I feel really bad for them (seniors Clayton Taylor and Skyler Buckhanan). It’s very unfortunate because they put in a lot of work during the offseason. I hope they stick around the team even though they’re not able to play.”
Taylor and Buckhanan were both knocked out of the game in the first quarter.
“When something like that happens, there’s two different ways you can take it,” said Felipe Martinez, Ceres High’s emergency quarterback. “You put your head down or take it as motivation. I tried to play hard for Clayton and Skyler.”
Taylor fractured his fibula during Ceres High’s second possession.
“He tried to retrieve the ball after a bobbled quarterback-running back exchange and somebody fell on his leg,” Chachere said. “We didn’t know the extent of the injury on the sidelines. We thought it was a rolled ankle. I talked with him after the game and he told me it was fractured.”
Buckhanan fractured his tibia and ankle in similar fashion.
Skyler started at receiver and punter.
He was also a backup defensive end.
“I’ve been coaching for eight years and have never seen those types of leg injuries,” Chachere said. “It’s really rare.”