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Weather, Practices Heat Up For Riverbank Athletes
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Despite this week’s hot temperatures, Riverbank High football players work out in preparation for their first scrimmage of the season. Here, Bruin coaches work with receivers in their pass catching drills. Ric McGinnis/The News

The hot temperatures in Riverbank this week – some days topping out in the triple digits – weren’t slowing down Bruin athletes preparing for their first competitions of the fall season.

The week started out with a 97-degree temperature at practice time on Monday, Aug. 15 with RHS football players and cross country runners out on the practice fields. While Bruin pigskin packers were on the field, the runners were taking laps around their field, the JV baseball diamond and the full-sized soccer field on campus.

Meanwhile, Lady Bruin volleyball players and the RHS girl golfers had it easier, practicing indoors, or in the shade, but logged their practice hours nonetheless.

On the football field, the Bruins were preparing for their first scrimmage game, set for this Friday, Aug. 19, at 7 p.m. They’ll be hosting the Falcons of Millennium High School from Tracy.

Head varsity football coach Joe Pirillo said, despite the projected high temperatures, a full week of practice sessions was planned.

“We will go from 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. There will be extra water breaks to monitor all players,” he said. “And we will finish up practice in the classroom for film with air conditioning. Wednesday is night practice from 6:15 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.”

He added that all coaches have had certified training on heat illness that needs to be renewed every two years, just like CPR and first aid.

Also on this upcoming weekend, Lady Bruin varsity volleyball begins its season, with an all-day tournament at Orestimba High School in Newman. Then, on Monday, Aug. 22, they’ll see their first home court action, hosting the Foundation Game, and welcoming in Johansen High’s Lady Vikings.

The Foundation Games across the area raise funds for Trans-Valley League programs.

On Tuesday, Aug. 23 Riverbank volleyball hosts Central Valley High School of Ceres.

Also on Tuesday, Aug. 23, Lady Bruin golfers will host their first action, against Gustine, and next Thursday, Aug. 25, they’ll host Hilmar’s Lady Yellowjackets, with both matches on the Escalon Golf Course.

Bruin co-ed cross country runners will see their first action on Aug. 30, at Frogtown in Angels Camp.

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Riverbank co-ed cross country runners were working out in the late summer heat on Monday this week, in preparation for their first meet, coming up on Aug. 30. Here on Monday, while football was practicing on their field, runners took a first lap around football, the JV baseball diamond and the soccer field. Ric McGinnis/The News
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Prospective Bruin quarterbacks work out in Monday afternoon’s 97-degree heat on the RHS practice field as they prepare for this Friday’s first scrimmage action. It’s set for 7 p.m. on the home field, hosting Millennium High School from Tracy. Ric McGinnis/The News