In order to win its first-round playoff match Wednesday, the Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy tennis team needed a late rally.
Flintridge Sacred Heart received a positive outcome in a matter of 15 minutes.
Flintridge Sacred Heart stormed back to win the the final two sets to top Torrance, 9-9 (80-78), in a CIF Southern Section Division IV match at Scholl Canyon Tennis Center.
Flintridge Sacred Heart will meet Bolsa Grande or Whitney in a second-round match Friday at a site to be determined.
The Tologs (11-4) received a doubles win from Claire McDonald and Hayes Sullivan and a singles victory by Meghan Sullivan to pull even with the Tartars (9-8) at 9.
Then Flintridge Sacred Heart coach Ron Zambrano, who guided the Tologs to the Sunshine League championship for the first time since 2015, did the math to determine which team won on games.
“That was a tough and close match,” Zambrano said. “We had to do a lot of things at the end to keep our season going.
“We had a tough first two rounds and I think maybe we were a little bit nervous. I felt good going into the third round that we could get to nine wins. I’m glad we were able to rally the way we did.”
Torrance, which finished third in the Pioneer League, held a 9-7 lead. McDonald and Chase Sullivan teamed up for a 6-3 win to pull Flintridge Sacred Heart to within 9-8 before Meghan Sullivan earned a 6-3 victory to knot it at 9.
The Tologs got two wins in singles from Meghan Garrity, 6-1, 6-0, and one apiece from Meghan Sullivan, 6-3 and MJ Von der Ahe, 6-1.
“We fought hard for those two sets at the end,” Garrity said. “We’re going for the [CIF] ring. That was a good match.”
Flintridge Sacred Heart received two doubles wins each from McDonald and Chase Sullivan, 6-3, 6-3, and Joelle Souma and Lanna Megerdichian, 6-3 (7-6), and one from Olivia Partamian and Alex De La Mora, 6-2.
Partanian and De La Mora won the league’s doubles championship for the first time.
“We were able to get a few big wins in doubles and that played a big part in winning,” said Zambrano, who led the Tologs to Sunshine League titles in 2014 and 2015.
The Tartars got three wins in singles from Kristi Sugimoto, 6-3, 6-0, 6-0, and two from Kelli Chong, 7-6 (7-3), 6-3.
Torrance, which registered a 15-3 road win against Century in a wild-card match Tuesday, received three wins in doubles from Emily Partida and Jane Chun, 6-3, 6-4, 6-1, and one from Rebecca Lee and Audrey Cho, 7-5.