By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Tough Start To League Play For Mustang Hoopsters
Sophomore Nathan Criswell battles under the basket for the varsity boys basketball team in earlier action on the home court. The varsity Mustangs opened Valley Oak League play this past week with a pair of losses. Jeremy Center/The Leader

The start to the Valley Oak League basketball season for the 2019-20 Mustang squads has been a rocky one.

Oakdale’s varsity boys basketball began the league campaign this past week and in those two games, the Mustangs could not get a win, dropping both of their contests. The varsity boys opened the regular season on the road at East Union on Thursday, Jan. 2, falling by a 66-52 final.

Oakdale struggled from the floor as only two Mustangs scored in double digits. Jonah Norman led the team with 21 points and Jackson Holt added 11. East Union jumped out to a 27-17 lead in the first quarter. The Mustangs defensively held the Lancers to just four points in the second quarter to go into halftime down just 31-24. Oakdale trailed 47-38 entering the fourth quarter and each team scored 16 points in the final frame.

Saturday afternoon, the boys fell to visiting Manteca 59-35. Norman once again led the team in scoring with 18 points, including going 3-for-3 from the free throw line. Michael Echavarria scored six points and Landon Nunes added five points. The visiting Buffaloes leaped out to an early advantage and did not let up, outscoring Oakdale 20-7 in the first quarter to set the tone for the contest.

Oakdale now holds an overall record of 10-5 and will host Sierra (9-6 overall) on Wednesday, Jan. 8. Following that, the Mustangs will host Central Catholic (10-6) on Jan. 15 at 7 p.m.



Coming off their holiday tournament championship, the junior varsity boys earned a pair of league wins. Oakdale defeated East Union 46-29 and also played to a 60-40 victory over Manteca. Oakdale dominated the Lancers and led 36-6 at halftime. Johnny Wylie scored 22 points. Against Manteca, the Oakdale JV squad held the Buffaloes to no offensive rebounds. Wylie scored 23 points and Brecken Campbell turned in an all-around effort with eight points, 12 rebounds, four assists and four blocks.

The freshman team went 1-1 in league play as they defeated East Union 53-48 but fell to Manteca 44-35. In the loss to Manteca, Oakdale held the Buffaloes to just two points in the first quarter but then Manteca ended up outscoring Oakdale 42-27 the rest of the way.