Cate Drops Close San Marcos Match, Rebounds in Malibu

IMG_1616After a resounding 17-1 victory against Carpinteria High School last Thursday, Cate faced local powerhouse San Marcos High School in a battle between (arguably) the two strongest girls’ tennis programs in Santa Barbara County. While Cate did not come out on top, there is no doubt that the match had a positive impact on the season and that energy yielded results in Malibu yesterday. Continue reading

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Cate Moves to 7-0 with Two More Decisive Wins

Cate Girls’ Tennis continues to pick up steam headed into the big show-down with San Marcos High.

Cate v. La Reina, 16-2 Win

Cate took another overwhelming victory last Thursday against Tri-Valley League
opponent La Reina.

Sophomore Grace Fuss led the charge with a sweep, including a convincing 6-1 victory over Tiara Nourishad, who is currently ranked #85 in California amongst juniors. Nourishad rallied to collect La Reina’s two wins on the day.

All eleven active players on the Cate roster picked up at least one win on the day. Continue reading

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Cate Girls Dominate Thacher in Ojai

IMG_1417Cate has come out a 13-5 winner in a match contested by two undefeated teams. Thacher is last year’s CIF D4 playoff champion, while Cate is coming off two consecutive D2 quarterfinal appearances. The teams finished second and first (respectively) in last year’s Tri-Valley League and both came into the match 4-0 on the season. Continue reading

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Cate Girls’ Tennis Off to 4-0 Start

IMG_1131It’s been a whirlwind early-season. With our first match just one practice after fall tryouts, and then a 10-day break for outings trips, it would be easy to forgive a shortfall in performance. That has not been the case, as Cate moves to 4-0 on the season. Continue reading

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Laguna Blanca Summer Tennis Camp 2017 Recap!

All-Camp PhotoYear #4 is in the books over at Laguna Blanca Summer Tennis Camp and I am proud to report another excellent week of tennis.

A dozen campers, three celebrity players, and your camp coaching staff enjoyed warm but pleasant conditions at Furukawa Tennis Gardens, with a smattering of fog to provide some sun relief.

During the week, we worked on becoming confident in tie-break situations, learned the high school format scoring system, and did many of the drills that have guided Laguna Blanca Boys’ Tennis to a 62-19 record over the last five seasons.

In the week-long team competition, Team Berkshire Hathaway held a steady lead throughout the week, although Team LaJuJuMaHaBen made a final day push to make the final score a very close 13-12 win for what we can only assume would be the Oracle of Omaha’s favorite pick for top tennis team.

While all campers exhibited good sportsmanship and drive throughout the week, several stood out as being worthy of our end-of-camp awards. Jake Gidney was the unanimous pick for “Coaches’ Award”, bestowed upon the camper that best embodied the characteristics desired in a player by coaches. Jack Connor snagged the “Most Improved” honors, transitioning from squash phenom to competitive tennis player in one week flat. Finally, the “Most Valuable Player” title went to Luke Williams, who showed himself not only to be the strongest player at camp, but also to be a great leader and teammate.

Thanks go to Laguna Blanca School for allowing me to host this event at Furukawa Tennis Gardens; to Tristan Prinz who has been a coach at each of the four editions of this camp; to Henry Farrell for stepping up from “celeb player” to coach in the summer before he departs for Harvard University; and to Jason Barnick, Atty Roddick, and Andrew Tolles for the volunteer work as this year’s celebrity players.

And of course, I want to thank our campers and camp parents for putting your faith in me to produce a fun and engaging tennis camp!

– Trevor, Your Santa Barbara Area Tennis Coach

At the BenchesBen Backhand VolleyBen v LucianCeleb Jason High-FiveCoach Henry + CampersCoach TristanCoaches + JackCoaches Mini-TennisDoubles Mini-Tennis GvBGeorge + Nicole SmilesHarrison On The RunHarrison Running FHHarrison ServingHenry + TristanJack Most ImprovedJake + Ben Dubs ChampsKate VolleyLucian Forehand VolleyLuke + George Dubsluke FH VolleyLuke High-FiveLuke Slice BHMatt + Jake ActionMatt ReadyNic FHNicole VolleyRyan + Nic DubsRyan StringJobSneaky Shot BoysAll-Camp Candid

 

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Laguna’s Playoff Run Ends in Quarterfinal Round

FullSizeRender 5Our playoff streak ended at three wins last night, with a defeat coming at the hands of Downey High School in Los Angeles. The CIF Quarterfinal appearance was my sixth in 16 seasons of coaching high school teams in Santa Barbara, but the first for my boys’ team. In fact, it’s the deepest playoff run for Laguna tennis that can be recalled by athletic program staff going back at least twenty years. Here are the final two match recaps:

Laguna Blanca v. Cabrillo/Lompoc (14-4)

On Friday, the Owls validated their position as the #5-seed in CIF Division 4 with a resounding 14-4 win over Cabrillo/Lompoc. The Round-of-16 match was held at Laguna Blanca on a beautiful Santa Barbara day.

Cabrillo entered the match with a 16-2 record and the beginning of the match was close, with Laguna leading 3-2 and one tight doubles match still in play. Freshmen Rhami Zeini and John-Henry Schulz took a 6-4 victory at the #2 doubles position to put Laguna ahead 4-2 after the first round of play. From that point on, it was nearly all Laguna in the win column for the rest of the match.

Junior Alex Furukawa remains undefeated in playoff play, recording 6-1, 6-1, and 6-4 victories on the day and juniors Conor Scheinberg and Jason Barnick continued their unbeaten streak in the playoffs at #1 doubles. In fact, Laguna Blanca doubles swept Cabrillo in 9 sets-of-play, with Zeini and Schulz taking care of business at #2 doubles and Kelvin Chen and Kevin Khodabandehlou also winning all three sets.

Kai Nakamura and Victor Liu both defeated the Cabrillo #1 player Cedric Kwon, but fell two the #2-#3 players who were both playing in the their last high school match.

Laguna Blanca @ Downey (7-11)

Playing against a school with 4,200 students to make a team from was always going to be a challenge for the small private school, but Laguna Blanca held its own in many of the matchups.

Kai Nakamura won 2-of-3 sets and Alex Furukawa and Victor Liu each added wins against the Downey #3 position.

In doubles, Conor Scheinberg and Jason Barnick got off to an excellent start, defeating the Downey #1 doubles team in the first round (6-2) and eventually finishing 2-and-1 on the day. Kelvin Chen and Kevin Khodabandehlou added an impressive 6-4 victory over the #2’s in the final round of play (6-4); Chen and Khodabandehlou were 4-0 as a doubles pairing in the playoffs.

The Bottom Line

While this is the end of the season for Laguna, it’s only “part 1” for this team. The 12 players who traveled to the Downey match will all be back next season, looking to improve upon this quarterfinal appearance.

I’m very proud of the way my guys battled today, even as we recognized we where playing the last round of our season. We took the final round 4-2 against a Downey team that really didn’t have any weak points. We’re already looking ahead to next season and I know a lot of the guys are planning to work hard to in the off-season to be ready.

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Laguna Wins First Two Playoff Matches!

Laguna Blanca Boys’ Tennis has made a triumphant return to the CIF Division 4 Playoffs after a one-year absence. After finishing the regular season 13-3 and earning a freelance wildcard spot in the playoffs, Laguna has now won two playoff games and enters a third tomorrow against Cabrillo/Lompoc.

Laguna Blanca v. Paso Robles (15-3)

Paso Robles came to Furukawa Tennis Garden boasting a 14-6 record and seemed like a tough draw for a wildcard round match for the #5-seeded Owls. What transpired, though, was one of Laguna’s most dominant performances of the season.

Alex Furukawa, Kai Nakamura, and Victor Liu all swept their singles opponents, giving Laguna a significant edge, and the top doubles pairing of juniors Conor Scheinberg/Jason Barnick also swept while playing down at the #3 position. Kovid Mishra and Kelvin Chen added two sets, including a 6-2 victory over the Paso #1 team.

Laguna Blanca @ Carpinteria (11-7)

This was a very familiar match-up, as these teams play each other twice each season, but anything can happen in the playoffs and Carpinteria is known for making strategic lineup adjustments. Though Laguna had beaten the Warriors (10-8, 12-6), the win was not a given.

After the first round-of-play, the two teams were knotted in a 3-3 tie, with Laguna winning 2-of-3 in singles, while Carpinteria snagged 2-of-3 in doubles. In fact, the match remained tightly contested until Laguna freshman Kai Nakamura defeated junior Jeremy Saito to end the second round-of-play, giving Laguna a 7-5 lead. Nakamura and Saito had played an hour-long set in their last meeting, with Saito prevailing 10-8 in the tie-breaker, but this time Nakamura was more aggressive and confidently ended the set at 6-4.

In the third round, Alex Furukawa recorded a 6-4 win against Saito and Scheinberg/Barnick continued their streak of wins as the Owls’ top doubles team. Nakamura and Liu added wins at #2 and #3 singles to bring the score to 11-7.

Looking Ahead

The Owls play next on Friday, May 12th in the second round of CIF Playoffs against Cabrillo/Lompoc. Cabrillo finished the regular season 15-2 and beat Oakwood of Hollywood in the first round. The match will be held at Laguna Blanca at 3pm. Please come out and support the Owls as they look to reach the CIF Quarterfinals for the first time in team history!

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