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Dawgs experience a major turnaround
CHS girls double win total from a year ago
Senior Jasmine Moore scored four points during her final game with Ceres Highs varsity girls basketball team. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Ceres High varsity girls basketball leader Kristen McClure coached Nicole Bates, Jessica Arreola, Jasmine Moore, Allyson Hailey and Mahlena O'Neal for the final time this past week.

The Bulldogs routed the visiting Pacheco Panthers 49-7 on Senior Night at Phil de la Porte Gymnasium on Feb. 16.

"It's very sad seeing them leave," McClure said. "I've been coaching them for a long time. They're a great group of girls."

Ceres High experienced a remarkable turnaround this past season.

The Bulldogs (14-11, 6-6 Western Athletic Conference) doubled their overall win total from a year ago.

Ceres High compiled a 7-12 record and had a 4-8 mark in WAC play during the 2014-15 campaign.

"We didn't have the greatest record but the girls played hard," McClure said. "There was a lot more leadership, chemistry and fight on the team this year. Everyone got along. The seniors wanted to go out there and prove something. Overall, the girls did really well."

Fourth-place Ceres High finished behind Sac-Joaquin Section playoff qualifiers Livingston (11-1), Central Valley (11-1) and Patterson (7-5) in the conference standings.

Crosstown-rival/WAC co-champion Central Valley edged Ceres High twice (45-43, 44-43).

"We could have won those games if we did some things differently," McClure said.

Ceres High had nine different players score during its WAC finale last week.

Bates, Arreola and O'Neal all tallied nine points.

Ayannah O'Neal, Natalia Cortez, Jasmine Moore and Kaylee Holloway had six, five, four and three points, respectively.

Breanna Moreno and Leena Bassi both collected two points.

Ceres High scored 21 points in the first quarter.

The Bulldogs led 33-5 at intermission.

Ceres High limited Pacheco to two points during the second half.

"We finished the year on a strong note," McClure said. "Overall, I'm really happy. We didn't want to end the season with a loss."

Bassi, Cortez, Holloway and Ayannah O'Neal will fill bigger roles on next year's team.

"Other teams in the league are losing seniors, too," McClure said. "It will be their time to shine next year. They're excited about that."