Tars too strong

Newport Harbor clinches at least a share of the Sunset League championship after a 14-4 win over Esperanza.

October 27, 2009

NEWPORT BEACH — Five girls’ tennis players went into Newport Harbor High’s crucial Sunset League match against Esperanza under the weather.

The Sailors more than survived at home.

Newport Harbor beat the Aztecs, 14-4, to clinch at least a share of the league title as it improved to 8-0.

The Sailors, the No. 10-ranked team in the CIF Southern Section Division II coaches’ poll, beat Esperanza (6-2 in league) for the second straight time this season.


Two more victories in league and the Sailors finish league undefeated in back-to-back years.

“I’m so proud of my girls,” said Coach Kristen Case, whose Sailors are 12-3 overall. “The girls that were sick knew how important this match was for us and their effort was unbelievable.”

Case said one of the ill players was Blake Bakkila. The sophomore played No. 3 singles and beat Esperanza’s No. 2 and No. 3 players. Case decided to take her out because she was fatigued.

“She was amazing,” said Case, whose Sailors play at Los Alamitos Thursday at 3 p.m.

Newport Harbor’s No. 1 doubles team of Ricki Archie and Christina Young improved to 22-0 in league play after winning 6-2, 7-5, 6-3, Tuesday.

In No. 2 doubles, Alex Aiello and Riley Mathies swept, 6-2, 6-3, 6-3.

The No. 3 doubles team of Holly Hovnanian and Megan Bothan won two of three for Newport Harbor.

“We did [won] and almost half of the [players] weren’t 100 percent and that’s why they’re in the position they’re in,” Case said. “They’re committed to each other.”

— From staff reports

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