Hoover tennis goes to games to defeat Burbank

GLENDALE — With playoff implications still in play, the Hoover High and Burbank boys' tennis teams played like there was a lot at stake in their Pacific League match Tuesday.

After each side notched a set in singles late in the contest, the match ended in a tie, prompting the always anticipated counting of games to decide the winner.

Ultimately, it was Tornadoes Coach Julie Hoppe breathing a sigh of relief as her squad won two more games than the Bulldogs to prevail and win the match, 9-9 (76-74).

"Big win," said Hoppe, whose Tornadoes maintain third place in the Pacific League standings. "We needed to win that. I told the guys at the beginning of the year that we have to beat Burbank."

The Tornadoes picked up one sweep on the afternoon, a 6-2, 7-6 (9-7), 6-1 result coming from the No. 1 doubles team of Arthur Arutunyan and Danny Kim.

Hoover's No. 2 duo of Eddie No and Hrant Agakhanyan won the only other set in doubles play, as Burbank took five of the nine sets.

Arutunyan and Kim have won five of their last six sets, dating back to last Friday's match with Crescenta Valley.

"We played together last year, and we play well with each other," said Kim, who along with Arutunyan, have won five straight sets. "Everything went well today. Our communications got across."

While Hoppe is hoping her No. 3 team can get over the hump and start winning sets, she knows her No. 1 and No. 2 single's competitors, Oleg Simonyan and Emile Ohanyan, will always come through.

Simonyan and Ohanyan both lost a set against the Bulldogs, finishing with lines of 6-1, 4-6, 6-2 and 2-6, 6-4, 6-0, respectively.

"Their singles got us," said Bulldogs Coach Loi Phan, who will battle it out with Crescenta Valley for fourth place as the regular season winds down. "Our No. 3 killed us. We'll get them next time, we'll be all right."

Burbank's top two singles players, Clayton Pauff and Kevin Orellana, won two sets apiece. Hoover's Chris Ghadimi was able to defeat Justin Kim, 6-0, after falling to Pauff and Orellana, 3-6, 0-6.

Simonyan defeated Kim, 6-2, shortly before Pauff defeated Ohanyan, 6-2, in the match's final set.

"It could have gone either way," Hoppe said. "Only two games. We still don't have third locked up, and we need to beat them again."

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