Stallions put eight goals on Huskies
Madera Tribune File Photo
Liberty’s David Portnoff puts his Mission Oak opponent into a pinning position with Madera Athletic Hall of Famer Corky Napier calling the potential pin at the BIG Duals Championship at Ranchos Middle School, hosted by Liberty in 2018.
After starting off with a grueling and unforgiving schedule, the Madera South girls soccer team surely needed a pick-me-up game after suffering losses to some of the best teams in the section.
Despite being banged up in key positions, the Stallions came through with a near-perfect performance in an 8-0 victory over Division III opponent Hanford West at Memorial Stadium.
The Stallions outshot Hanford West 28-5 with junior Yesseniah Delgadillo scoring a team-high three goals while also recording an assist. Leila Monzon, Daisy Jimenez, Ana Walker and Angel Rodriguez each chipped in with scores for Madera South while freshman Jasmine Garibay finished with two assists.
Led by Walker, Esmeralda Navarro, Angelica Ortiz, Evelyn Guzman, Anna Nitschke and Adriana Arce, the Stallions’ defense — which has been the cornerstone of the team this season — kept the undermanned Huskies off the scoreboard. When Hanford West managed to get off a rare shot attempt, sophomore goalkeeper Jocelyn Salazar came up with four saves in the match.
Coyotes put away Mendota
Playing in its hometown tournament, the Madera girls basketball team got off to a strong start with back-to-back wins in Joe Flores Gym.
The Coyotes handled Kerman 51-14 in their Madera Shootout opener before pulling away in the second half to beat Mendota, 51-33.
Madera was led by Ashley Hansen, who showed her unlimited range with a 21-point performance against the Aztecs.
Hansen scored the first eight points for the Coyotes, which included hitting two 3-pointers — one from the top of the arc and another from the corner.
Stallions settle for tie
The Madera South Stallions boys soccer team used a true home-field advantage to take an early lead against the Fresno Warriors in a non-conference game.
However, Fresno tied the score late in the second half and the team settled for a 1-1 tie in the first game under the lights on the Madera South campus.
Over the summer, lights were installed to practice fields on the Madera South campus and at the softball and baseball diamond. Tuesday’ match against the Warriors was the first official game under those new lights.
“It’s a true home-field advantage for us,” first-year head coach Fernando Delgadillo said. “The ball doesn’t have those true bounces like on the turf at Memorial Stadium. We’re used to this field and those uneven bounces.”
First-half goalkeeper Emmanuel Molina kept the Stallions in the game in the first half. He came out with a slide to block a shot and slid to block the rebound in the 25th minute.
Hawks speed past Eagles
Despite not having a player taller than 6-3 on its roster, the Liberty Hawks boys basketball team has what most coaches would love — speed.
The Hawks used their speed to force 36 turnovers to capitalize on numerous fast break opportunities for a 72-52 victory over the Firebaugh Eagles on the first day of the 10th annual Hawks Classic at Liberty.
With their easy turnover opportunities, the Hawks shot 50 percent (27-of-54) from the field and were able to quiet any Firebaugh comeback chances with scoring spurts created from defensive pressure.
Anthony Aguilar led the Hawks with 23 points while Dylan Reitz had 17.
Danny Cervantes helped the defense with eight steals and scored right points.
Stallions get two tourney wins
No matter how many times a coach tries to simulate late-game situations during a practice, nothing compares to actually being in those types of circumstances against live competition.
That’s the position the Madera South girls basketball team found itself in against Minarets-O’Neals in the Madera Shootout.
While the Stallions held a 10-point lead late in the fourth quarter, the Mustangs wouldn’t go away easily and their threat of a comeback was enough to put a scare into Madera South head coach Teresa Hernandez.
“For whatever reason, my team likes to give me heart attacks and make a game out of ones that aren’t suppose to be,” Hernandez said of the Stallions’ 55-47 victory in Joe Flores Gym. “It’s understandable since I have a lot of freshmen and young players. We haven’t been in many situations where the game is so close especially in past seasons, so everyone is a little bit new to these two-minute drills. It’s just teaching them time-management and knowing what the score is. Just knowing what to do in those situations and not freak out if we’re ahead.”
Coyotes fall to Golden Eagles
Trailing 2-0 at halftime to a Div. I team while missing a number of starters, the Madera girls soccer team had every excuse in the book to fold up the tent and move on.
Instead, the Coyotes battled back to tie the match before the Golden Eagles scored the game-deciding goal with 21 minutes left in regulation.
“It shows fight,” Madera head coach Cameron Hill said of the team’s narrow 3-2 loss in Memorial Stadium. “It’s one of those deals where we know we can play with any team because we’ve played some really good halves, but we haven’t played a good full game yet. When we do that, I don’t see us losing.”
Madera outscored the Golden Eagles in the second half on goals by Juliet Trembley and Mia Alvarez.
Coyotes lose OT heartbreaker
Generally in sports, teams never want to leave the door open for an opponent to come back.
The Madera boys soccer team certainly found out first hand what can happen when the opposition is given a sliver of hope.
Leading 2-0 in the second half, the Coyotes couldn’t capitalize on a penalty kick against Clovis West.
Facing a two-goal deficit, the Golden Eagles clawed back and scored twice off headers, including one just before the final whistle of regulation.
With the match tied at 2, the Eagles scored two goals in overtime to pull out a 4-2 win in Memorial Stadium.
The Coyotes played a near-perfect game and seemed to have the Golden Eagles’ number.
Senior captains Oswaldo Tornero and Elias Hernandez each scored first-half goals while Cesar Vaca made key stop after stop to lead 2-0 at half.
Stallions down Lemoore with strong second half
With two first-half goals, the Madera South boys soccer team defeated the Lemoore Tigers in Memorial Stadium.
The Stallions scored the first two goals of their Dec. 11 match in the first 20 minutes, but gave up a goal shortly after the second goal.
Senior Christian Garcia and junior David Vasquez scored the Stallions’ two goals in a similar fashion, following up missed shots with a scrappy effort.
Garcia took a cross from Abraham Vasquez and scored by following up his own miss.
Vasquez scored the second goal when he out-hustled his opponents to the rebound off a corner kick.
Strong leads Hawks in win against Madera
Liberty girls soccer player Holly Strong is used to scoring with dazzling free kicks. The senior, who has been doing it since she was a freshman, put on her latest display against the Madera Coyotes.
Strong’s two goals, including a long-range shot from a set piece, led Liberty High to a 3-1 win against the Coyotes in Memorial Stadium.
Liberty girls soccer coach Erick Walker said it’s time people start paying attention to Strong.
“If people don’t know about her and her dead-ball shots, they’re not paying attention to us,” Walker said. “She has been doing it since she was a freshman. With her being a senior and doing what she’s doing, she’s not being recognized by the coaches, unfortunately. They should learn this by now.”
With the two goals from Strong and a third by Sara Garibay, the Hawks’ win against Madera gave them their second-straight victory.
Hawks come up short in title game
After seven straight wins and two in the Hawks’ Classic, the Liberty-Madera Ranchos boys basketball team were unable to find the final bucket in a 61-59 championship game loss to the Firebaugh Eagles at Liberty High School.
“Overall, I thought our team’s performance was great and they played with a lot of energy,” Liberty head coach Johnny Gonzales said. “I know at the end we came up short, but overall our performance was really good, and the boys gave it there all. Makani’s injured fingers on his shooting hand really hurt us after we pulled him out of the third quarter.”
In the first round, the Hawks faced off with the Minarets Mustangs and won by a score of 77-51. First-year Hawk Makani Whiteside continued his unearthly start to the new season. Standing at 6-feet, 4-inches, Whiteside can play in the paint like a big man, but also around the perimeter as a guard.
His ability to create shots for himself helped contribute to a 26-point win in which he scored 35 points to go along with 9 rebounds. Nathanael Samarin chipped in 19 points to help the Hawks advance past the first round.
Madera coach resigns after three years
After three years at the helm of the Madera Coyote football program, varsity head coach Yosef Fares stepped down.
“We appreciate the time and effort coach Fares has given to the Coyote football program,” Madera athletics director John Fernandez said. “We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”
Fares will return to his alma mater and team with his high school football coach, Donnie Arax, and become the co-head coach and defensive coordinator at Bullard-Fresno.
“There’s been ongoing discussions during his time here,” Fernandez said. “Discussions intensified over the last three to four weeks. They provided him an opportunity to return to his alma mater.”
Madera teams get mat time at BIG duals
While many teams are still working to get their line-ups set, the Madera, Madera South and Liberty wrestling teams were getting valuable mat time heading into the winter break.
Each team earned valuable mat time for its players with five matches at Ranchos Middle School at the BIG Duals Championship, hosted by the Liberty Hawks.
For Madera, it was measuring where they were after finishing the tournament with a 3-2 record and a consolation title in the silver bracket.
For the Stallions, it was earning mat time for its young team despite a 1-4 record heading into their first County/Metro Athletic Conference dual meet of the season against the Sanger Apaches.
For the Hawks, it was seeing where they stood against some tough competition. After losing to wrestling powers Buchanan-Clovis and Mission Oak-Tulare, Liberty closed its tournament with three straight dual match victories.