Football squad preps for league play; face Tokay on Oct. 9


Wayne Thallander

Tracy quarterback Josh Alvarado scrambles for yards during game against Turlock.

Duncan Ordenana, Staff Reporter


“We need to execute our plays and not turnover the ball,

— Pribble

“As long as we do that we have a good chance at making the playoffs,”

The Tracy Bulldogs football team is on a bye week having just finished its non-league games with a 2-3 record.

The Bulldogs were presented with a challenge when coaches realized that starting quarterback Josh Alvarado was only 14 years old. Rules state that a player has to be 15 years old to play on varsity. The Bulldogs sent Alvarado down to the sophomore team and brought up the sophomore quarterback Ethan Bejines.

Bejines finished his time on varsity with a 2-1 record. After a tough loss to Clayton Valley, the Bulldogs went on to win away games against the Beyer High Patriots and the Kimball High Jaguars. Bejines finished with 163 yards passing, and two touchdowns, and one interception in two games.

“It was very surprising I wasn’t expecting it, it just happened,” Bejines said. “It was very exciting and it gave me a chance to show the coaches what I could do on varsity.”

The coaches were pleased with Bejines response to being put in his situation so fast.

“I think Ethan came up and accepted the challenge,” offensive coordinator Jeff Pribble said. “After a few practices, he calm down and was able to run our offense with confidence,”

Alvarado’s birthday was on Sept. 24, the day before the game against Turlock. While playing on the sophomore team Alvarado dominated, and the team finished 3-0 during his time there.

“The transition was kind of hard because the game speed on varsity was very quick,” Alvarado said. “It was a lot slower on sophmores so you really have to let everything develop.”

Alvarado played his first game back on varsity against the Turlock High Bulldogs on Sept. 25. Tracy played Turlock twice last year, once in non-league and once in the first round of playoffs. Both games were close, but Tracy won both by two points.

It was a tough game this year as Tracy could not get any momentum, and ended the first half trailing 27-0. The defense played well in the second half holding Turlock scoreless, but the offense didn’t put up points and Turlock won, 27-0. Alvarado finished his first game back with 46 yards rushing and two interceptions.

“The first game back was kind of hard because the change in game speed was very different and I have to get back where I was after week one,” Alvarado said.

The coaches are still confident in their team’s ability to play well.

With the preseason behind them, the Bulldogs get a bye week to rest and prepare to host Tokay High on Oct. 9. Tokay is 3-2 and runs an offense similar to Tracy. Tracy won last year’s game against Tokay, 34-7.

Entering league play West High leads the TCAL with a record of 4-1 lead behind running back Marcel Dancy who has over 1000 rushing yards. Tokay High has a 3-2 record. Lincoln High and St. Mary’s have 2-2 records. Tracy High and Lodi have 2-3 records.