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Hawks seek turnaround after 2017 struggles
Coach Heese has high expectations for CV boys volleyball team
Central Valleys varsity boys volleyball program welcomes back five players from last years team, including Angel Arellano (pictured). - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Central Valley's varsity boys volleyball program mustered two wins in Western Athletic Conference play in 2017.

Head coach Kelly Heese projected a positive forecast for the Hawks this spring.

"My expectations are always high," Heese said.

Central Valley returns five players from a year ago, including Angel Arellano (Sr.), Hector Herrera (Sr.), Omar Espinoza (Jr.), Jair Pineda (Jr.) and Otoniel Hernandez (So.).

First-year players Roberto Cisneros (Jr.), Uriel Hernandez (Jr.), Angel Leon (Jr.) and Javier Villanueva (So.) contributed at the junior-varsity level in 2017.

Ivan Velasquez (Jr.) and Erick Martinez (So.) are new to the sport.

"We have a young team," Heese said. "They want to learn. I want them to play to their potential."

Martinez has emerged as a leader with the Hawks.

Erick started at goalkeeper on Central Valley's varsity boys soccer team during the wintertime.

"He's one of the most coachable players I've had in my 18 years of coaching," Heese said. "He has that drive and enthusiasm. You can't teach that. Once he figures everything out, he's going to be untouchable."

The top three teams in the WAC will secure berths to the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs.

Central Valley compiled a 2-13 record on its way to a last-place finish in the conference standings last season.

Patterson (15-0) claimed the league championship.

Crosstown-rival Ceres High (10-5) tied for second in the WAC with Los Banos.

The Bulldogs improved their all-time record versus the Hawks to a perfect 5-0.

"If we practice hard and play together as a team, I strongly believe we can make playoffs," Martinez said. "The skill is there."

"Every time they step on the court, it has to matter to them," Heese said. "That's what their mindset has to be."