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Ceres teams face off for the first time
• Varsity Seahawks forfeit four wins for using ineligible player
Amir Drakeford and the Ceres Seahawks junior-varsity football team raced past the Ceres Jr. Bulldogs 26-6 on Saturday at Ceres High. - photo by Contributed

The Ceres Seahawks junior-varsity youth football team earned bragging rights with a 26-6 win over the Ceres Jr. Bulldogs on Saturday at Ceres High School.

The Seahawks and Jr. Bulldogs competed in different leagues in the past.

“We’ve wanted to play them for a while,” Seahawks’ head coach Junior Schaefer said. “It was nice to finally be able to do that. Hopefully, we can keep the rivalry going for years to come.”

The first-place Seahawks improved to 6-0 in the Central Valley Gridiron Youth Football standings.

The fourth-place Jr. Bulldogs dropped to 3-3.

The Jr. Seahawks lost all 10 of their games in Cen-Cal League play last year.

"They work well together. They listen. They love playing football. Last year made them hungry to win.”
Coach Junior Schaefer

“I had high expectations from the start,” Schaefer said. “I knew what the kids could do. They work well together. They listen. They love playing football. Last year made them hungry to win.”

The Seahawks scored four touchdowns against the Jr. Bulldogs.

Center Michael Solis, guards Isaac Marquez and Anies Preciado, and tackles Manny Quijano and Oscar Johnson provided the blocking.

“The credit goes to our linemen,” Schaefer said. 

Linebackers Tristan Villicana and Mario Gonzalez both filled major roles in leading the Seahawks to a shutout victory versus the Jr. Bulldogs.

“The kids worked hard,” Schaefer said. “The offensive line blocked well. The defense flew to the ball. I knew they’d stay focused.”

Schaefer downplayed the importance of the first-ever meeting between the Seahawks and Jr. Bulldogs leading up all-Ceres showdown.

 “I told the kids it was just another game on the schedule,” he said.

The Seahawks will put their perfect 6-0 record on the line when they battle the fifth-place Merced Jr. Gauchos (2-5) this Saturday at Golden Valley High School.

 “We’ll clinch the No. 1 seed for the playoffs if we win one of our next two games,” Schaefer said.  “I expected to do well this year. But I didn’t expect the margins we’ve been winning by. It starts with the defense. We’ve only allowed 34 points the whole season.”


The Ceres Jr. Bulldogs and Ceres Seahawks rookies youth football teams faced off for the first time this past weekend.

The Jr. Bulldogs kept their perfect record intact with a 42-0 win over the Seahawks on Saturday at Ceres High School.

The Jr. Bulldogs improved to 7-0 in the Central Valley Gridiron Youth Football standings.

The Seahawks dropped to 0-6.

The Jr. Bulldogs totaled 237 rushing yards on 30 carries against the Seahawks.

Connor Cattleman carried the ball seven times for 85 yards and two touchdowns.

Noel Garcia ran for 51 yards and one TD on four carries.

Andre Flores had 35 yards and one touchdown on five carries.

Kyle Chhoeum added 24 yards and one score on three carries.

Ezekiel Walderrama chipped in with 59 yards on four carries.

The Jr. Bulldogs limited the Seahawks to just 40 yards of offense.

The Jr. Bulldogs racked up 44 tackles and forced three turnovers.

Flores collected six tackles and returned an interception for a touchdown.

Garcia tallied nine tackles and two sacks.

Chhoeum had five tackles and one fumble recovery.

David Sanchez had four tackles and one fumble recovery.

Walderrama and Raul Luna both had four tackles.

Joshua Manriquez had three tackles and one sack.

Felix Martinez had three tackles.

Rene Cervantes and Alberto Barajas each had two tackles and half-a-sack.


The Ceres Seahawks varsity youth football team will forfeit all four of its wins, including Saturday’s 26-6 victory against the Ceres Jr. Bulldogs, for using an ineligible player.

The Central Valley Gridiron Youth Football League handed out the punishment during Monday night’s emergency meeting, which was staged at Round Table Pizza on Mitchell Road in Ceres.

“A mistake was made,” Seahawks President Willie Solorio said. “It’s my fault 100 percent for not understanding the rule clearly. I would never break any rules on purpose or for any reason at all.” 

“It was a miscommunication,” CVGYFL Commissioner/Jr. Bulldogs President Joe Estrada said. “They take full responsibility. They’re not cheaters. The Seahawks have a great organization.”

Central Valley Gridiron Youth Football League teams are permitted to have a maximum of five freshmen players on their rosters.

“It’s in the rulebook,” Estrada said. “But once you put a helmet and pads on in high school, you’re not eligible to play Pop Warner football in the same season.”

“It was confirmed,” Solorio said. “He did practice with the team before quitting. He didn’t play in a game. It was a clear misunderstanding of the freshmen rule. We didn’t stack our team.”

The Seahawks (0-6) dropped from third to last place in the CVGYFL standings.

The Jr. Bulldogs, Central Valley Lions, Turlock Jr. Hornets and Merced Jr. Gauchos were awarded forfeit victories.

“The people who know us know we’re not a cheating organization,” Solorio said. “We’ve never had to forfeit a game at the varsity level. We had to forfeit one JV game last year because a bunch of kids went on vacation and couldn’t play.”