As the winter season comes to an end, Bear Creek athletes finish off the season strongly with girls soccer and boys wrestling taking league champions.
The varsity girls wrestling finished their season third in the SJAA league.
“Jenna Bacich, my daughter, immensely improved this year by moving to number three ranked in California, coming a long way with not being ranked last year,” coach Harold Bacich said.
According to Bacich, the girls worked very hard all season, pushing themselves every day.
“Niya Gaines is ranked number three in the San Joaquin Section which is really good since it’s only her second year doing the sport,” Bacich said.
The varsity boys finished off their season undefeated 5-0, number one in the SJAA.
“I am extremely proud of the boys this season,” Bacich said. “They came in this year more determined than ever.”
The varsity boys were the first team ever to win the league title for wrestling in Bear Creek history.
“Beating Chavez at their home for league title felt so good,” senior Aaron Chavez said. “Knowing that all our hard work paid off made us proud of ourselves.”
Even after 15 wrestlers quit due to the intensity of the practices, Bear Creek wrestling found a way to win the SJAA league title.
“Robert Moreno had a tremendous season going 28-5,” Bacich said. “I am extremely proud of all the boys.”
The varsity girls basketball team ended its 2017 season 19-3 (including pre and regular season), making it the highest ranking girls basketball team in Bear Creek history.
“There is a really young team this year,” senior Breanna Hilliard said. “There are only two seniors that actually play. The rest are sophomores and one junior.”
The varsity team had a shift in chemistry when new coaches — coach Anthony Matthews (head coach), coach Lawrence Brice (strength coach) and coach Barb Perez (post coach) — came into play.
“We are extremely proud of our girls,” Brice said. “They had a huge shift in routine this year and they handled it very well.”
“It took awhile to get the spark back since there was such a big age difference along with getting new coaches,” Hilliard said.
Unlike the girls, the boys team struggled and ended their season 0-6.
“It was a frustrating season,” senior Mohammad Rasool said. “We had very high hopes for the year.”
Rasool admits that even though the boys had high expectations for the season, they never quit working hard.
“We worked hard on and off the court,” Rasool said. “I’m proud of us for sticking together.”
According to coach Anthony Torres, the varsity boys were a very young team.
“I knew it was going to be a learning process,” Torres said. “They reached all my expectations and I’m extremely happy that they never gave up coming into the varsity game.”
In Torres’ eyes, there is no such thing as a star player; there is only a team.
“Each player was given a role at the beginning of the season and each one of them achieved that role,” Torres said. “I am tremendously proud of them.”
Varsity girls soccer ended the season with their first league championship and a perfect 8-0 in regular season.
“The team chemistry this year has been like no other,” coach Jeff Pappas said. “The girls have become ‘one’ team, focusing to achieve ‘one goal.’”
Pappas said the best moment of the season so far was when final whistle blew in their game against McNair when the girls won 5-1.
“My goal for this season was to treat every game like it’s a playoff game,” Jeff Pappas said. “I wanted the girls to support one another on and off the field by representing Bear Creek soccer with respect and respect to the game.”
That goal was achieved when the girls finished as league champions.
“This season was really great,” senior Shelby Bartlett said. “There has been very positive energy both on and off the field, making us connect as a family more than a team.”
Boys varsity soccer had a successful season ending 3-6-3 in the SJAA league.
“I expected my boys to work hard this year,” coach Carlos Rivas said. “They achieved that goal by working hard every day.”
This hard work led the team to having one of the best seasons in Bear Creek history.
“I am extremely proud of senior Charles Brewah and freshman Devan Bolina,” Rivas said. “Charles plays both defense and offense and is one of our top scorers and Devan plays just like a veteran.”
“We had a good season,” Brewah said. “I definitely expected more of the team but we worked hard and that’s all that matters.”