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CdM doubles teams tripped up in semifinals

TENNIS: Hogan and Matsuoka, as well as Kaiden and Polizois, battle but can’t advance to title match at CIF Individuals.

December 12, 2007|By Matt Szabo

SEAL BEACH — Just as they did when the CIF Southern Section Individuals doubles championships began, two Corona del Mar High doubles teams began their day Tuesday on Courts 10 and 11 at the Seal Beach Tennis Center.

It was on these side-by-side courts that the teams of Melissa Matsuoka and Hailey Hogan, as well as Danielle Kaiden and Paige Polizois, began Round-of-16 play with a pair of easy wins on Nov. 29.

After 12 days and two rain postponements, another win Tuesday morning would mean a trip to the final. But neither team could do it, as both saw their journey end in the semifinals.

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Molly Aloia and Haley Dixon of Great Oak (Temecula) defeated No. 2-seeded Matsuoka and Hogan, 6-1, 4-6, 6-2. No. 1 seeded Brynn Boren and Kristina Smith of Dana Hills bested Kaiden and Polizois, 6-4, 6-0.

Neither of the two doubles teams appeared overly crushed after their matches. They posed for pictures with teammate Karen Ishii and laughed.

CdM Coach Brian Ricker, who knew both of the semifinals would be tough matches, said he was proud of their effort.

“By the time you get here, all the teams are good,” Ricker said. “They’re not only good tennis players but they’re good doubles players.”

Hogan and Matsuoka pushed Aloia and Dixon after losing the first set, 6-1. Both Aloia, a senior, and Dixon, a sophomore, kept blasting winner after winner in that first set. They played like they had during the regular season, when neither player lost a singles set all season for Great Oak, the Southwestern League champion.

“They came out on fire,” Matsuoka said.

The Pacific Coast League doubles champions also went down, 2-0, in the second set, but won four games in a row, with Hogan pounding ground strokes and Matsuoka making volley winners at the net. Up, 5-4, Hogan held serve in a deuce game to even the score at a set apiece.

“In the second set, I think we hit more at their feet and they were missing a little more,” Hogan said. “Even in the third set, we had our chances.”

After a blazing backhand winner from Matsuoka, the CdM duo had Dixon at 0-30 on her own serve to begin the third set. But Dixon — who had been getting more and more frustrated as the match went on — held.

“If we could have broke there, that could have demoralized that team,” Ricker said. “That could have been the end, because she was so up and down mentally.”

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