CV, Prep garner playoff spots

A familiar foe stands in front of the Crescenta Valley High girls' tennis team in its bid to return to the CIF Southern Section Division II second round.

Upon the release Monday morning of the girls' tennis playoff pairings, the Falcons found out they'll play a La Canada squad that they played just two weeks prior and defeated by a lofty 15-3 margin.

In stark contrast, Flintridge Prep will play host to a Dos Pueblos squad that Rebels Coach Ron Catano said he knows relatively nothing about.

The Falcons and Rebels will each host their first-round matchups at 2 p.m. Thursday.

Crescenta Valley's talented singles duo of Karen Ataian, the newly crowned Pacific League champion, Emily Borkowski notched sweeps against the Spartans, as did the Falcons' No. 1 doubles team of Jackie Dilanchian and Viktoriya Shumakova.

Should the Falcons (15-2), who finished second in the Pacific League, prevail, they would face either a wild-card entrant or, more than likely, fourth-seeded El Dorado.

La Canada (9-8) finished second in the Rio Hondo League behind San Marino, the No. 2 seed in the tournament and the defending division champion. San Marino ended the Falcons' season last year in the second round.

Dos Pueblos (10-7) finished second in the Channel League to top-seeded Santa Barbara.

Nonetheless, Catano believes if he has a full team with all his players in their proper roles, a victory should be in the cards.

"If we get that, I see us going very deep in the playoffs," said Catano, who's hoping to get Kira Lee, the reigning All-Area Girls' Tennis Player, into the singles lineup after a season in doubles nursing an injury and is also worried about an unnamed player possibly missing the match, "if we don't get that, it could be a very early exit."

The Rebels (13-4), who finished second in the Prep League behind Westridge — which hosts Beverly Hills — has been playing well, according to Catano, and he likes the changes of his team – provided he has a full squad.

"I think everyone's playing pretty well," Catano said. "I'm seeing how we do and how far we can go."

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