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Girls' Tennis Team Previews

August 28, 2013

Corona del Mar

Coach: Brian Ricker (10th year)

Players to watch: Lauren Thaxter (Sr.); Riley Gerdau (Jr.); Kenzie Purcifull (Sr.); Shelby Anderson (Jr.); Siena Sharf (Soph.); Taylor Fogarty (Jr.); Kimmia Naaseh (Sr.); Erica Chen (Soph.).

You should know: This is the deepest Sea Kings team that Ricker has had in years. CdM returns seven of nine starters from a year ago, when CdM finished second in the Pacific Coast League and advanced to the CIF Southern Section Division 1 quarterfinals. Ricker said there also is a strong freshman class, which contributes to the depth.

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Fresh off a summer full of tournaments, Thaxter headlines the returners, coming back for her third year at No. 1 singles. She advanced to the league semifinals last year. Ricker said she is doing better than ever at managing her atypical migraine headaches. Chen is a talented player who won the JV league singles title last year and got moved up toward the end of the year.

Purcifull and Gerdau played at No. 1 doubles last year, but Ricker said the plan is to move Gerdau back to singles, where she played as a freshman. The Sea Kings have the doubles depth to do so.

The Pacific Coast League again appears very strong. Beating University will be a challenge, but Ricker believes CdM could be No. 2 in the league again, and could start the year as high as No. 5 in Division 1.

— Matt Szabo

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Estancia

Coach: Rachel de los Santos (13th year)

Players to watch: Kinley Ohland (Soph.); Slade Garnett (Jr.); Doris Corona (Sr.); Morgan Miller (Jr.); Eden Speel (Soph.); Mai Le (Jr.).

You should know: The Eagles lost several seniors from last year's team, which tied for third in the Orange Coast League and advanced to the CIF Southern Section Division 2 playoffs. But a young nucleus will help Estancia, as it again tries to finish top-three in league and advance to CIF.

Ohland returns as the No. 1 singles player, and de los Santos praises her natural talent. Ohland will have a busy fall, as she also is a varsity cheerleader for Estancia.

Garnett, a lefty transfer from Texas, also will help Estancia, as will the Eagles' other top singles player, Corona. De los Santos plans to play Miller and Speel at No. 1 doubles, and they are an aggressive team with good volleys at the net. Le is a three-year varsity player who adds depth.

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