SOUTH PASADENA — What was supposed to be a measuring stick for the progress of both the Mayfield Senior School and Maranatha High girls’ tennis teams instead resembled a middle-of-the-season league match Tuesday afternoon.
The mild Crown City rivals opened the regular season with a back-and-forth affair secured over the final two sets by the Cubs in a 10-8 nonleague victory at the Arroyo Seco Racquet Club.
“This win felt really good. Definitely, the girls stayed focus throughout the entire match,” Mayfield first-year Coach Silvana Stans said. “This was a good match to start the season and we did well.”
Fortunately for Mayfield, Tuesday’s match came down to doubles play.
The Cubs held a significant advantage in winning the doubles action, 7-2, which helped offset their 3-6 record in singles play.
Cubs junior Mary Baggott and sophomore Maureen McConnell, Mayfield’s top singles team, proved the catalysts in going 3-0 and winning their final set, 6-0, in breaking a 6-6 team tie after two rounds.
The victory was followed by two singles wins from Maranatha’s Lauren Garcia and Hailey McNall and a Cubs singles victory that knotted the score at 8.
That’s when Mayfield rallied with a crucial 6-3 doubles victory from the No. 2 team of Eve Marcussen and Nicole Johnson over Maranatha’s Sandy Thong and Natalie Yee.
The final victory was secured when Cubs junior Ally Pratt teamed up with her sister, freshman Emily Pratt, for a 6-2 victory over the Minutemen reserve squad of Samantha Lin and Priscilla Sam.
“This was our first match and we were trying to get used to each other as partners,” Marcussen said. “We were trying to get the feel down and this showed that we’re an improved team from last year.”
Mayfield, which finished 2-13 overall last season, was tied at 3 after the first round when the Minutemen took the advantage at 5-3 after singles victories from McNall and Garcia once again.
Yet, Mayfield rallied behind its doubles squads in tying the match at 6 heading into the final round.
“We got a chance to size up where we’re at and we look promising with potential,” Maranatha first-year Coach Arthur Hsieh said. “But we’re going to really have to improve on the doubles side. We lost today because we didn’t play well enough.”
McNall and Garcia finished 3-0 in singles play to lead Maranatha, while the Minutemen doubles tandem of Katherine Yao and Anneleise Busto notched a win, as did Thong and Yee.
Marcussen and Johnson finished 2-1, while Ally Pratt and Emily Pratt were 2-0 and Ally Pratt and starter Allie Tsuchiya went 1-0.
Larsen, Bridget Parrish and Brynn Evans all clinched a singles win apiece for Mayfield.