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RHS track coaches honored
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Riverbank High School track coaches Ron Hebert and Monte Wood have been recognized as coaches of the year by a Modesto newspaper.

Boys coach Hebert and girls coach Wood worked with assistants Jeep Oliveira and Kevin Marks to lead the Bruins to Trans Valley League titles for both teams in 2004.

Oliveira coaches the jumps and distance running, and Marks coaches the relay races and sprints.

This year marked the ninth straight TVL track and field title for the Bruin boys and the third straight for the girls.

"We've won 14 championships in the last nine years, nine for the guys and five for the girls," said Hebert.

Hebert said that as much recognition should go to the assistant coaches as to Wood and himself, and even more to the student athletes who work so hard yearlong to excel in track and field events.

"They do most of the work, even if the head coaches are the ones recognized," he said.

Hebert has coached track at RHS for 18 years and was the football coach here for eight years. He is now coaching football at Modesto Junior College.

Wood, who has been a teacher and coach at RHS for seven years, also directed the praise to the athletes themselves.

"I didn't know anything about this recognition until I got an e-mail," he said. "It's a big honor. But there are a lot of other hard working coaches out there who deserved it as much as me."

Wood coached in Missouri for four years before coming to RHS.

His speciality is training pole vaulters. He was a vaulter himself in high school, although not in college.

Even though the high school track season is over and RHS is closed for the summer vacation, Wood is still taking Bruin vaulters such as Kasey Wool and Tony Winstead to weekend competitions.

There is "a street vault" like the one in which David Harrison performed in Modesto, slated for August in Pleasanton. Wood is talking about the Bruins being represented there.