The much-anticipated showdown between the Ceres Seahawks and Modesto Broncos varsity youth football teams took place this past weekend.
Forced to battle back after squandering a two-touchdown lead, Ceres outlasted Modesto 40-30 Saturday night at Modesto Christian High School.
There were six lead changes during the Central California Jr. Football League contest.
"I was expecting it to be a close game and low scoring game due to the fact that we've played against each other for so many years that we know each other's tendencies," Seahawks head coach Joe Borba said. "We both added a few wrinkles this week that helped jump up the scoring effort. It was an exciting game for everyone that was in the house."
Ceres quarterback Phoenix Jackson threw for one touchdown and scored once on the ground.
Isaiah Hidalgo rushed for over 100 yards and tallied two touchdowns.
Jaden Merchant had over 100 receiving yards and one touchdown.
Amare Roberson had more than 50 rushing yards and one touchdown.
Isaiah's 45-yard interception return TD gave the Seahawks a 22-16 lead as time expired in the opening half.
Hidalgo accounted for Ceres' first touchdown when he scored on an 8-yard run.
Jackson tossed an 80-yard touchdown pass to Merchant during the Seahawks' second scoring drive.
Jackson, Hidalgo and Roberson had TD runs of 4, 6 and 14 yards, respectively, during the second half.
Amare's touchdown increased Ceres' lead to 10 points with 1:01 to play. Roberson carried the ball four straight times, totaling 43 yards.
Merchant, Reuben Valenzuela, Michael Leon and Jorge Gutierrez were major contributors on defense.
The Seahawks improved to 2-1 on the year.
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"We're getting better each week," Borba said. "We definitely haven't reached our potential."