High School Sports

Julio Cortez, Los Banos quarterback

Much of the talk about Los Banos' resurgent program has focused on the arrival of coach Dennis Stubbs. Overlooked in all the excitement, though, has been the play of the Tigers' quarterback, Julio Cortez.

With a 14-0 deficit, Cortez engineered a comeback by hitting 16 of 25 passes for 233 yards and four TDs in a 36-26 win over Turlock. That boosted his yardage total to 1,022 and doubled his TD passes to eight, but more important, it moved Los Banos into sole possession of first place in the Central California Conference.

Cortez certainly had his favorite target Friday night, as he hooked up with Rubal Sangha on TD throws of 29, 9 and 27 yards. Los Banos still trailed 26-21 going into the fourth quarter, before Cortez tossed a 17-yard TD to Joe Macias and his final scoring toss to Sangha.

The Tigers visit Golden Valley this Friday, a game with plenty of emotion: Stubbs coached GV last year.

-- RICHARD T. ESTRADA

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