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Radeva, Cernius moving on from Newport Harbor girls' tennis team

Newport Harbor singles players don't plan to be back next year for Sailors as they focus on other opportunities.

June 16, 2012|By Matt Szabo

Other programs, such as powerhouse University, have much different philosophies. Coach John Kessler allows his players to practice elsewhere during the season as well.

"Coach Case is one of the most respected and hard-working coaches in CIF," Longoria wrote in an email. "If she were coaching any other sport — softball, volleyball, soccer — her style would be "spot on." It is more difficult in an individual sport, especially with the Southern California mentality about tennis where the individual comes first and team is second. I do not know about other states, but in Texas (where I am from) all but the very highest top players all play high school tennis. For example, the lowest starting player on varsity would have a high USTA ranking, which is not usually the case in California.

"Kristen develops players and definitely is teaching lifelong skills that go far beyond the life of school, college or USTA tennis. Her teams are always prepared, disciplined, in the best shape, show great sportsmanship, are always enthusiastic, and of course, place team above self. It takes a great amount of energy and dedication to run a program like hers. It may not be for everyone and every player has to make a choice, but those that are part of her program, even if ranked players, definitely know the relationship of hard work, respect, discipline, and teamwork with success ... Funny, I don't remember many individual names on her teams, but I sure know about Newport Harbor tennis."

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The Sailors have been successful under Case. They won their fourth straight Sunset League title last year and advanced to the Division 2 championship match for the second straight year.

This fall, the Sunset League has been moved up to Division 1.

matthew.szabo@latimes.com

Twitter: @mjszabo

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