LA CRESCENTA — With a bump up to Division I in girls’ tennis, Crescenta Valley High looked to gauge itself against visiting Arcadia in a Pacific League rematch Tuesday afternoon.
The Apaches, ranked No. 2 in CIF Southern Section Division !, would be a test for the Falcons if they hope to venture deep in the playoffs.
This time, Crescenta Valley claimed two doubles sets, but Arcadia’s singles swept to help the Apaches defeat the Falcons, 16-2, at Crescenta Valley.
“Every time we play a team like Arcadia, we have to be humble and we have to learn a lot of things from them,” Crescenta Valley coach Sam Hyun said. “… We’re learning a lot here, but as a Division I team, we’re trying hard for the playoffs, so it’s a good experience.”
The loss snapped a six-match win streak in league for Crescenta Valley, which started after the Falcons’ first match against the undefeated Apaches, an 18-0 sweep. Crescenta Valley finishes second in league.
Despite the loss, it was a proper test for the Falcons (13-6, 9-2 in league).
“We’re glad we’re in Division I,” said Hyun, whose team advanced to the Division III title match in 2017. “We’re going to try to pass the first round, one match at a time and do our best to see what happens.”
The Falcons No. 3 doubles team in Shyla Summers and Elena Markova won the first set of the day with a 6-4 win over Arcadia’s No. 3 team of Christina Yao and Michelle Dong.
The Crescenta Valley No. 1 doubles duo of Anjana Saravanan and Polin Crete also defeated Arcadia’s No. 3 team, 6-4.
“We knew that we had to give it our best to be able to have a chance against Arcadia,” Crete said. “Usually we lose, 18-0, to them, but this time we went in the match and thought we have nothing to lose, so just try your best and see what happens.”
The No. 1 doubles nearly won their last set against Arcadia’s No. 2 squad and led, 5-4, before the Apaches rallied to win, 7-5.
“Today, we weren’t playing super great,” Saravanan said. “But we tried to think on our feet a little bit. We switched positions a little and tried to push things up by running to the net, because we know that if we’re having an off-day, we can’t let that determine how we do.”
With an injury to his usual No. 1 singles player, Melissa Muradoglu, Hyun brought up Teleya Blunt from junior varsity to fill the No. 3 spot. Blunt came close to claiming a set from her No. 3 spot, but lost, 7-6 (7-4).
Crescenta Valley wraps up league play against Glendale on Thursday. Then it’s on to the Pacific League individuals preliminary tournament next week at Burroughs High before the playoffs begin.