Tennis bounces back from hard loss with 5-2 win over Rockville

Sept. 20, 2002, midnight | By Michael Sidorov | 18 years, 4 months ago

Girls win second at home, improve to 3-1

On a day where no matches went to three sets, the girls' tennis team improved to 3-1 with a 5-2 victory Friday, Sep 20 over Rockville High School.

The Blazers lost their first and second singles matches but won the remaining five. In the longest and most competitive match of the afternoon, senior second singles player Lisa Kim was defeated, 6-3, 7-6 (7-3). Kim and her opponent were probably the two hardest hitters on any court, making for a match with plenty of winners by both players. Kim agreed that she and her opponent had similar playing styles, both using numerous backhand drop shots and powerful forehands.

A key point occurred late in the second set when Kim set up her opponent with two hard forehands, leading to an emphatic overhead smash. Kim, recovering from an illness, said that she tired more easily than usual in the long match but fatigue was not a huge factor.

On the fourth singles court, junior Valerie Shen won 6-0, 6-1 by capitalizing on her opponent's unforced errors. Shen believes her opponent's problems returning some shots played right into her strategy of playing consistently and waiting for mistakes. "My balls are usually slower than my opponents'," she said. She "waits for [her] opponent to make kills" that today were unforced errors.

In first doubles, juniors Katherine Epstein and Aditi Bhaskar won a well-played match, 6-4, 7-5. A key point was midway through the match when Bhaskar hit a solid cross-court forehand and Epstein volleyed the return at the feet of a Rockville player for the winner.
Other doubles winners were sophomore Seema Kacker and junior Emily Tsui, 7-5, 6-1 on the second court and freshmen Dominique Franson and Janice No, 6-0, 6-0 on the third court.

Senior third singles player Christina Feng won 6-2, 6-2 and freshman Stephanie Paul lost 6-1, 6-1 on the first singles court. In Paul's match, neither player made many unforced errors but the Rockville player, Brittany Barsky, kept Paul moving to set up hard-hit winners.

The Blazers will look for their first division win on Tuesday, Sep 24 at Damascus High School at 3:30 p.m.

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