If the high school wrestling season is a roller coaster, then Friday and Saturday's action at the Doc Buchanan Invitational in Clovis caught Oakdale at the lowest point they may reach this season.
The lanky figure of Justin Martinez doesn't just help him get that can of beans from the top shelf. Oakdale's imposing center on the varsity basketball team has emerged into a serious and dynamic role on the prep court this season.
With the No. 5 ranked team in the state looming across Oakdale High's home mat on Dec. 23, Mustang wrestlers knew they needed some significant upsets to stay unbeaten in dual action this season.
A dominant second quarter gave Los Banos High's varsity boys basketball team a three-point lead over Oakdale at the half and momentum for a potential run at the 42nd Annual Oakdale Rotary Classic finals, but Mustang seniors Justin Hernandez and Nathan Van Ryn were not to be denied a championship rematch.
Summer sports and the start of a new school year meant plenty of action for the Leader's sports section.
If Oakdale High wrestling fans wanted an improbable upset victory for Christmas, than Santa granted their wishes during unlikely dual meet at the Mustang gymnasium on Dec. 23.
A valiant fourth-quarter comeback nearly closed the gap, but Oakdale High's varsity girls basketball team (4-8) slipped to a 41-36 defeat to talented Hilmar (11-2) in the third-place game of the Ripon Christian Tournament on Dec. 29. Oakdale beat Delhi in the tourney opener, but dropped their next two contests to Hughson and Hilmar. The Lady Mustangs were forced to finish tournament action without starting point guard Blanca Lara, who spent her New Year's holiday in Mexico. With Lara absent from the lineup, Oakdale struggled against Hilmar's full-court press that gave the Yellowjackets a 17-6 advantage in ...
A 63-48 victory over Pacheco on Dec. 21 put a nice polish on Oakdale High's varsity basketball preseason, but today's start to the 42nd Annual Oakdale Rotary Classic (Dec. 28) represents the last test drive before conference play.
Oakdale High's junior heavyweight on the varsity wrestling team, Zack Fallentine, exploded onto the prep wrestling scene with a 5-2 win over Buhach Colony's Michael Escobar to claim first place honors in the 36th Annual James Riddle Classic earlier this month at OHS.
Only six high school wrestling teams attended the 2011 John Zhender Duals at Elk Grove High on Dec. 17, but they were six very good teams and Oakdale was the cream of the crop. Oakdale went 5-0 across a full day of action against five of the best teams in the Sac-Joaquin Section and the North Coast Section.
A last-moment three-pointer gave Downey High's varsity girls basketball team brief hope for a late comeback, but Oakdale maintained the final possession for a 40-37 victory over the host Knights on Friday. The win improved Oakdale to 3-4 in non-league action with a solid 255-280 scoring differential between opponents. The games have been a nice way to open the year after blowout losses of 20 or more points in five of Oakdale's last games of the 2010-11 season.
Oakdale High seniors McKenzie Willet and Justina Keith signed their names to written commitments on Dec. 11 to attend the University of California, Merced on partial volleyball scholarships. Both will join the seven-year-old university for its second ever National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics season in 2012.
With five likely starters expected to miss the mat this season and another three football players still awaiting service on the active roster, Oakdale High's rag-tag collection of varsity wrestlers wasn't expected to continue the tradition of dominating their host tournament to open the season.
With fall players finally landing spots on the winter sports rosters, Oakdale High varsity basketball teams saw an influx in production and victories over the past week.
Top 10 teams
Senior wrestlers in the Valley Oak League must have night terrors about wild horses.
Veteran Stampede Cheer coaches, Abby Gottlieb and Annamarie McDaniel, and first year coach Jenna Zellmer knew they had a special team at the beginning of the Oakdale Stampede season but they soon discovered their girls were not only talented, but champions.
You could sew the collection of Sac-Joaquin Section banners obtained by Oakdale High's wrestling program into a king-sized quilt.
Those epic Oakdale-Sonora football games may soon be replaced by Oakdale-Central Catholic.
Oakdale High custodians should check the roof of the Mustang gymnasium for holes, because Austin Archuleta shot the roof off the place on Feb. 1.
Between game-winning shots at the buzzer, game-tying three-pointers in the final moments and stellar post play against the biggest team in the league; it's been an exciting run of games for Oakdale High's varsity boys basketball team.
There's no crying in baseball, but there sure is plenty of it in wrestling.
The strength of the lineup represented by Oakdale High's wrestling team will be on emphatic display on Feb. 2 at Lincoln High in Stockton, where only a miracle will prevent the Mustangs from nabbing a seventh Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV team duals title in eight seasons.
Kylie Gust heroically drained three straight free throws with .6 seconds remaining in regulation to launch Oakdale High's varsity girls basketball team into an overtime contest against East Union on Jan. 24.
And just like that, the seams attaching Valley Oak League jerseys with their success over Oakdale High's varsity boys basketball team have burst amidst the flexing of Mustang muscles.
Among the plethora of Oakdale High wrestlers listed on the California Wrestling Newsletter state rankings, 195-pound senior Hondo Arpoika is not the highest ranked. However, Arpoika made progress in that regard by advancing from "honorable mention" into the top-40 ranked wrestlers in the state by landing a fifth place medal at the prestigious Temecula Valley Battle for the Belt on Jan. 19. Arpoika won big matches in both the championship and consolation bracket. He bested Dylan Bollinger of Sultana 3-1 on his way to the medal podium.
Maybe you are slapping your bare arms and legs like they stole your headgear or maybe your headphones are blasting Justin Bieber's "Beauty and a Beat" while your teammates assume its Metallica.
Oakdale's boys basketball team was eight minutes away from securing its first Valley Oak League win of the season at Manteca High on Thursday, but the Mustangs were held to a single point for the final 7:59.
Somewhere in the midst of the scuffles and fouls, Oakdale High's varsity girls basketball team found a mean streak on Jan. 16.
Some of the best high school wrestling teams in the country again converged on California for one of the toughest tournaments of the year on Jan. 18 and 19 at the Temecula Valley Battle for the Belt.