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CHS soccer girls step up
Abi Prado
Abi Prado and Ceres High’s girls soccer team will close out the WAC regular season today at home. The Bulldogs will play host to the Grace Davis Spartans at 5:30 p.m. - photo by Dale Butler

Ceres High’s girls soccer team has notched two wins and one tie during its last three outings.

The Bulldogs kept their playoff hopes alive with a 3-1 win over Mountain House on Monday at CUSD Stadium.

“I told them they could write their own story,” head coach Hannah Menk said. “They knew what was on the line. They played with urgency the whole game.”

Ceres High improved to 10-6-1 overall and moved into a tie for third place with Mountain House in the Western Athletic Conference standings (8-4-1).

The top three teams in the WAC will be awarded playoff berths at the end of the regular season.

“It would be awesome to go to playoffs,” Menk said. “We got robbed of an opportunity last year (due to the COVID-19 pandemic).”

“We need to win and another team needs to lose,” she added. “Right now, we’re just trying to have fun.”

Natalie Cabrales collected one goal and one assist versus Mountain House.

Arianna Diaz and Andrea Hernandez both tallied one goal.

Goalkeeper Llian Blevins had 10 saves, including seven in the second half.

“That was her best game of the season,” Menk said.

Down 1-0, Ceres High tallied three straight goals to secure the victory.

“The vibe of the team was positive,” said Menk, whose team fell behind early in the must-win contest. “Having fans there motivated them.”

Ceres High blanked Pacheco 2-0 on Wednesday at CSUD Stadium.

“Their goalie did really well,” said Menk, whose team shut out the Panthers 8-0 earlier this season.

Diaz and Natalie Corbin both scored once during the second meeting.

Ceres High had 17 shots on goal. 

“We hit the frame at least five times,” Menk said.

Ceres High had to settle for a 1-1 tie while battling host Los Banos on Jan. 24.

Kristina Corbin accounted for the Bulldogs’ lone goal.

Blevins tallied nine saves.

Ceres High compiled a 1-1-1 record versus Los Banos this season.

“You have to give Los Banos credit,” Menk said. “They were aggressive. This is the best I’ve seen them play.”

The Bulldogs will close out the WAC season today with a home match against Grace Davis.

The Senior Night game will begin at 5:30 pm.

Three Ceres High choir members will perform the national anthem.

The school’s cheer squad will perform at halftime.

“I’m trying to make it special for the seniors,” Menk said.

CV girls struggle

Central Valley’s girls soccer team fell out of playoff contention this past week after collecting two losses and one tie against Central California Conference competition.

“We were expecting so much from the girls this year,” head coach Miguel Larranaga said. “It’s been a tough season because of a mix of things, especially injuries.”

The shorthanded Hawks dropped to 6-9-4 overall and 1-6-3 in CCC play after losing 3-1 to Buhach Colony on Friday in Atwater.

Michelle Soto accounted for Central Valley’s lone goal.

Goalkeeper Yukari Mendoza totaled six saves.

Central Valley had 24 shots on goal during Wednesday’s 1-1 tie versus visiting Atwater.

“We should have won,” Larranaga said. “We dominated. We just had trouble finishing. We do good at practice. We’re not performing during games.”

Isabella Barajas collected the game-tying goal with 15 minutes left to play.

Barajas re-aggravated an ankle injury during the play and exited the contest.

“She’s out until next season,” Larranaga said.

Freshman Magnolia Tavison made six saves at goalkeeper.

The Hawks edged the Falcons 3-2 on Dec. 17.

Host Merced pulled away for a 7-1 win over Central Valley on Jan. 25.

“It was a pretty even game for half of the first half,” Larranaga said.

Down 2-1, Central Valley yielded five unanswered goals.

“They pretty much scored every chance they had,” Larranaga said. “It was crazy.”

Central Valley dropped to fifth in the CCC standings last week. The top three teams qualify for the playoffs at the end of the regular season.

The Hawks have competed with a depleted roster most of this year due to injuries and COVID quarantine.

“It’s frustrating,” Larranaga commented.

Central Valley will wrap up the CCC season this week.

The Hawks will play host to the Merced Bears today and at Patterson on Friday.

“The teams we’re playing are really good,” Larranaga said. “Hopefully, we can finish strong. I’m looking forward to next year.”