by CORY CHEN & SHARON PHU
Hoping to improve from their preseason games, the varsity netters will play their first league game against the Mark Keppel Aztecs Sept. 25 at home.
The Spartans lost against the Warren Bears, 12-6, in a preseason home match Sept. 18. Singles No. 1 Demitria Mo and No. 2 Irene Chen both won two sets against the Bears with identical scores of 7-5 and 6-2. The doubles No. 1 team of Jaimie Hsu and Jane Quach and No. 3 team of Diana Diaz and Sunnie Mo both won a set 6-3 and 6-2 respectively. The JV team lost against the Bears, 17-1.
“The hardest thing about tennis is not the physical strain, but the mental fight to always try your best for every single point,” said Chen, varsity netter.
The netters’ home game against the Whittier Cardinals Sept. 18 was cancelled due to heat and temperature conditions.
Both levels played the Arroyo Knights Sept. 12 in an away game. Demitria Mo, No. 1 singles, conquered all three of her sets. Adding more wins, Chen, No. 2, won two sets, and Karen Lu, No. 3, won one set. Hsu and Quach, No. 1 doubles team, swept away all three of their sets. Julia Feng and Tiffany Ngo, No. 2 doubles team, earned one set for the Spartans. Diaz and Sunnie Mo, No. 3, won two sets.
The JV netters, playing at home, were victorious against Arroyo, 13-5. Jordon Leong, Karen La and Melody Yu, singles No. 1, 2 and 3, respectively, each won all of their sets. Denyse Arellano substituted for two of Leong’s sets, successfully contributing two wins to the Spartans’ overall score.
The JV doubles lineup changed throughout the game. For the first round, the No. 1 team was comprised of Melissa Jew and Kelly Lam. Kasey Wu was substituted in for the second and third sets, garnering the Spartans a 6-2 win in the third set. Ella Dario and Jennifer Sanchez, No. 2 doubles team, won one set, 6-3; Flora Wu substituted for Sanchez in the third set. Monica Velazquez and Yen Vuong, No. 3 doubles, won two sets with scores of 7-5 and 6-2; Yesenia Lopez-Muñoz substituted for Vuong in the third set.
At home Sept. 11, the varsity netters lost by one set against the Rosemead Panthers, 10-8; JV also lost to the Panthers, 15-3.
“The team is a lot stronger than when I first worked with them,” said Timothy Dang, varsity coach. “We have been trying to improve by honing their skills, having a good mental game and, most importantly, having fun.
The varsity netters shut out the South El Monte Eagles, 18-0, at home Sept. 10. Defeating the Eagles, 12-6, the JV team was successful as well.
At an away game Sept. 9, the varsity netters lost to the South Pasadena Tigers, 17-1. The JV netters also lost to the Tigers, 18-0.
“Although we have been losing more than winning before the start of this season, I feel that the team has grown together and individually,” said Quach, varsity netter. “We try our hardest to win and we support each other along the way, no matter what the result is.”
Four consecutive games were played Sept. 2-5. The Spartans garnered a 10-8 win against the West Covina Bulldogs, but suffered a 14-4 loss against the La Serna Lancers.
Nogales did not have a JV team due to a lack of players. The JV team lost to Temple City Sept. 2 with a score of 14-4.