Los Banos High's 9-0 loss to Ceres may look bad on paper, but Los Banos coach Lynn Barcellos is happy, all things considered.
"We played them 100 percent better than last time. The matches were a lot closer," Barcellos said. "Ceres is like my girls team. They're going to have a real good shot at doing well in sections -- of going real far, like winning it."
With an inexperienced Tigers team, Barcellos just wanted to see improvement, and she did, especially in her doubles, which played all three matches close.
"I told them I wanted to see an improvement, and the coach even said he saw an improvement," Barcellos said. "My doubles matches all lost 6-0, 6-1 last time. This time one went to three sets and one was 6-4, 7-5."
With Ceres undefeated in league (all but one match by a score of 9-0), Patterson (8-2) sits in second place. Los Banos (3-6), Livingston (5-3) and Central Catholic (3-5) are all fighting for that last playoff spot, with Livingston on the inside track.
"We are 3-6 right now, and we still have Patterson in a makeup game, Livingston and Pacheco," Barcellos said. "And we're very capable of winning those games."
A 6-6 record may not be enough if Livingston keeps winning. Results from LB's Thursday makeup match against Patterson were unavailable at press time.
Individually, LB's top player, J.T. Barcellos, sits in third in league play with a 6-3 record in league play, with two losses to Ceres and one to Patterson.