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Spring Sports Start Short Schedule Of Contests
Lady Bruin Cecilia Leon competes in the discus throw at last week’s Southern Athletic League tournament here on the home field on May 5. The second in the series is set for May 12 in Hughson, with the third returning here next week, on May 19. Ric McGinnis/The News

Riverbank High School’s spring sports swung into action on the home courts and fields this past week, in the COVID-delayed and -shortened season. Girls and boys basketball and soccer teams saw the start of their spring season; typically those would be winter sports.


Basketball In Spring

Both boys and girls round ball teams returned to action last week, with both teams handling home and away games. In a normal year, basketball games usually start over the Christmas break.

The Bruins hosted their first game of this new season last Wednesday, May 5, facing the Denair Coyotes and falling 60-53. They traveled to Waterford on Friday, but the score was not reported.

Lady Bruin basketball reversed that schedule, playing in Denair on May 5 and hosting Waterford on Friday. Riverbank fell to the Lady Wildcats, 40-33.

Since there are no league, section or state championships this year, teams are simply getting the chance to play some games for enjoyment of the sport. Also, not all schools are fielding JV teams, so those games are even more sparse and, in many cases, normal JV players are having the chance to see some varsity action.


Track And Field Tournaments

Last Wednesday, the Angelo Novi Stadium on campus hosted the first round of Southern Athletic League Track and Field tournaments, beginning in the afternoon. Today, the second round is being held in Hughson, but the meet will return to Riverbank next week, for round three.


Bruin Baseball

Riverbank baseball continued last week, but the Thursday game, scheduled with Modesto Christian High School, was canceled, reportedly because the Crusaders are not fielding a team this year.

And this year, Riverbank is only offering a varsity team, since several schools are facing the same situation. The Bruins played at Denair on Saturday, but that score was not reported.


Boys, Girls Soccer

Both teams kicked off their 2021 seasons last week, with the familiar home and away schedule. While soccer games were moved to the winter a few years ago, this spring action allows both teams to play on their regulation sized practice field, since lights are not needed for afternoon games. The football field is not as wide as a regulation soccer pitch.

Riverbank’s Anthony Leon drives toward the key in third quarter play against the visiting Coyotes of Denair. The varsity boys basketball game was on Wednesday, May 5, with the Bruins falling, 60-53. Ric McGinnis/The News
Rylie Vernon scrambles to control the ball during a varsity girls basketball game last week. The Lady Bruins were on the attack early in the first quarter. The visiting Lady Wildcats from Waterford came back from a nine-point deficit in the fourth quarter to take the game, 40-33. Ric McGinnis/The News