Girls' Tennis: CdM advances to semifinals

Strong team effort lifts Sea Kings over Santa Barbara. Top-seeded Peninsula is next.

November 11, 2013|By Matt Szabo

The last four singles sets Corona del Mar High sophomore Elena Fish has played have been tough to swallow.

Fish lost three close sets to highly ranked players at Brentwood on Friday in a CIF Southern Section Division 1 second-round match, 6-4, 6-4, 7-5.

On Monday afternoon at CdM, Fish fell to another top player, Madison Hale of Santa Barbara, 7-5. Yet she never gave up and kept scrapping for points. CdM junior Shelby Anderson, with whom Fish shares the No. 3 singles spot, is the same way. It's necessary for both to be ready to go, as senior Lauren Thaxter's status is typically day-to-day as she deals with atypical migraine headaches and "auras."


"Them sharing the No. 3 spot, and that not being a problem for our team, is huge," CdM Coach Brian Ricker said. "Their attitude is wonderful."

CdM's doubles teams have deservedly gotten a lot of press this year, but Fish and Anderson are vital elements as well. But their attitude wasn't the only wonderful thing for the Sea Kings on Monday.

CdM defeated Santa Barbara, 11-7, in a Division 1 quarterfinal match, advancing to the semifinals for the first time in three years. The No. 4-seeded Sea Kings (19-3) will play at top-seeded Palos Verdes Peninsula in the semifinals Wednesday at 2 p.m.

"I think tennis has been slacking with all of the CdM sports," said freshman Jasie Dunk, who swept at No. 2 doubles with sophomore Siena Sharf. "It's fun that tennis is really good now."

Sharf and Dunk had to win the last set when the Sea Kings played the Dons in a nonleague match on the road last month, helping CdM post a 10-8 victory. Monday's match was decided earlier, after Sharf and Dunk won in doubles and junior Riley Gerdau won in singles early in the third round.

CdM took a 4-2 lead after a round. Seniors Kimmia Naaseh and Kenzie Purcifull outlasted Karina Thornton and Lexy Gulden, 6-4, at No. 1 doubles. And Sharf and Dunk rallied to beat Megan Grant and Lisa Santry, 7-5.

The Sea Kings' lead was 8-4 after the second round, which included a big 6-0 win by Thaxter over Hale. Hale won the matchup in the previous nonleague meeting, 6-1.

Purcifull and Naaseh won twice to improve to 53-9 at No. 1 doubles. Dunk and Sharf are 51-8 at No. 2 doubles. Taylor Fogarty and Erica Chen, who also won twice on Monday, are 42-12 at No. 3 doubles.

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