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Mustang Squads See Mixed Results For Senior Night
Honored for their contributions to the Water Polo program at OHS during recent Senior Night festivities were, from left, Mae Focha, Kylee Keeler, Presley Barnes, Allyson Criswell and Isabella ‘Izzy’ Salzer.

Leader Photos By Jeff Kettering 

Thursday evening, Oct. 12 was a busy one on the Oakdale High School campus. It was Senior Night 2023 for varsity boys and girls water polo teams, as well as Lady Mustang volleyball. It was a successful one for the water polo girls and volleyball teams. The boys fell short in their contest.

For the varsity girls water polo, a handful of seniors were recognized. Mae Focha, Izzy Salzer, Presley Barnes, Allyson Criswell and Kylee Keeler were all acknowledged before their match. Oakdale defeated Gregori 10-2. Goals were made by Salzar, Barnes and Holly Hixon.

Oakdale boys fell to Gregori 6-3. Luke Guignard, Wiley Ballantyne, Logan Castano, Jeremiah Janssen, and Cullen Liekhus were the seniors for the team that were acknowledged prior to their contest. Oakdale scored first on a Guignard first period goal. With a 1-0 advantage heading into the second period, Gregori scored three straight goals to go up 3-1. The scoring drought for the Mustangs ended when Ballantyne scored with 3:27 left in the third period. Down 4-2 in the third period, Liekhus scored for Oakdale with 43 seconds left but that was as close as they could get.

The Mustangs water polo program is scheduled to travel to Sonora on Thursday, Oct. 19. The girls are scheduled to play at 4 p.m. and the boys jump in the pool at 5 p.m.



It was a night of mixed emotions for the team. A team that has been through so much adversity, they took to the court and came out with a 3-0 victory over Kimball. Prior to the contest Oakdale recognized seven senior players. Paige Taylor, Grace Miller, Jade Lemke, Brooke Wheat, Karlie Spencer, Jessica Sanders and Jordyn Lewis were all acknowledged by the program, family, friends and fans.

“This is a special group who worked through so much this season,” said head coach Kaitlin Burke. “With all of the injuries and struggles, this team has come together and united to make the most of this season as we gear up for the postseason.”

Oakdale won set one 25-12, set two 25-19 and closed out the third set 25-10.

“I love this team and staff. It really is a special group and with all of the things that we have gone through, the injuries and difficult losses, we have stayed positive and we have grown so much as a team,” said senior Grace Miller.

Oakdale was scheduled to wrap up the league schedule against Central Catholic on the road Tuesday night, Oct. 17 following The Leader’s press time.



Members of the Lady Mustang tennis team defeated Central Catholic on the road 5-4. This secured the program at least a share of the Valley Oak League championship. It is the first time in over a decade that the team has had at least a share of the title. The girls were scheduled to take on Manteca, Tuesday, Oct. 17 following The Leader’s press time. Oakdale wraps up the regular season on Thursday, Oct. 19 at Sierra.

Seniors recognized prior to their recent water polo contest, saluted for their efforts on behalf of the team through the seasons, were, from left, Luke Guignard, Wiley Ballantyne, Jeremiah Janssen, Cullen Liekhus, and Logan Castaño.
Seniors Grace Miller, Brooke Wheat and Jessica Sanders celebrate a varsity Lady Mustangs volleyball victory over Kimball, sweeping past the visiting team.