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106th Annual Southern California Junior Sectionals:

Nation’s largest junior tourney begins

TENNIS: Plenty of locals vying for titles in different divisions of the annual event that’s based at Los Cab in Fountain Valley.

June 13, 2008|By Matt Szabo

The top seeds at the 106th annual Southern California Junior Sectionals tennis tournament can sit back and relax for now.

Seeded singles players don’t begin play in the Round of 32 until next Friday. For many other local competitors, however, the largest annual junior tournament in the United States, based at Los Caballeros Sports Village in Fountain Valley, begins today.

The local seeded players in the tournament include Newport Beach resident Ali Walters, who is half of the top-seeded team in the girls’ 18 doubles draw. Walters is teamed up with Alison Ramos of Troy High, and they begin play in the Round of 32 on Sunday at 5 p.m. at Los Cab.

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Corona del Mar High senior Fabian Matthews is also a favorite. A three-time CIF Southern Section Individual tournament champion, the UC Irvine-bound Matthews is the No. 4 seed in boys’ 18 singles. He and Ryan Cheung of University High will also attempt to defend their Junior Sectionals title in boys’ 18 doubles, where they’re the No. 2 seed.

Matthews and Cheung begin their title defense today at 4:30 p.m. at Los Cab, in the Round of 64 against Daniel Kosakowski of Downey and Shuhei Shibahara of Palos Verdes.

Newport Beach resident Joseph Di Giulio is the No. 4 seed in boys’ 14 singles.

Di Giulio, who was ranked No. 1 in the nation in boys’ 12 singles last year, also won the boys’ 12 singles title at Junior Sectionals a year ago. Joseph’s younger brother, Austin, is also the No. 9 seed in the boys’ 10 singles draw.

Another local No. 4 seed is Costa Mesa resident Chris Freeman, who attends Mater Dei High. Freeman and partner Billy Grokenberger, of Santa Barbara, are the No. 4 seeds in boys’ 18 doubles. They begin their tournament against Corona del Mar’s Ryan Peyton and his partner, Martin Lopez of Laguna Niguel, today at 3:45 p.m. at Los Cab.

CdM junior-to-be Melissa Matsuoka is seeded No. 7 in the girls’ 16 singles draw.

Her Corona del Mar teammate Hailey Hogan, playing with Sarah Lee of Los Angeles, is seeded No. 5 in the girls’ 18 doubles draw and they begin play Sunday.

That girls’ doubles draw also includes No. 9-seeded Estancia senior-to-be Ellie Edles, and her partner Stefanie Villajuan of Troy High. Also in the draw are the Sea Kings players Karen Ishii and Kelli Feeley, as well as Danielle Kaiden and Paige Polizois, plus Jeanne Frei and Natalie Small of Newport Harbor High.

All-local teams in the boys’ doubles draw include Chris Damion and Parker Rhodes of Corona del Mar, and Kevin Wang and Alex Koeberle of Sage Hill.


MATT SZABO may be reached at (714) 966-4614 or by e-mail at matthew.szabo@latimes.com.

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