HANFORD — The score doesn’t always tell the whole story. Such was true on Wednesday in Hanford West’s loss to Redwood.
Redwood got a 9-0 clean sweep, but at no point did Hanford West ever concede. The Huskies fought hard despite being winless on the season and losing almost every point.
“I think they did well as far as competing,” Huskies head coach Randy Guevara said. “I think we’re getting stronger and stronger as every match comes on and I think this was a nice challenge for us as well.”
Hanford West No. 1 singles player Andrea Cuevas was the only player on the day to manage to win a couple games. The senior lost 2-6 and 0-6 to Redwood No. 1 singles player Kate Sapasap, but the two games meant a lot more than just a loss.
“I thought I did better than I thought I was going to do,” Cuevas said. “It’s Redwood and no one ever beats them so I’m glad I at least got points on them and it means that I’m improving.”
Hanford West (0-8, 0-8 WYL) could have tossed in the towel long before they started their match against Redwood (16-3, 8-0 WYL), a team who’s won 167 consecutive league games dating back to 2003.
They could have tossed in the towel when they realized Redwood was their next opponent. Or they could have waived the white flag during preseason. Or even when their schedule was first released — but they didn’t. Instead, they competed.
“I was pretty happy that my girls were fighting back,” Guevara said. “We’re definitely showing some improvements on paper and we’re definitely showing some improvements on the court.”
The No. 2 through No. 6 singles players didn’t manage a game against Redwood. The No. 1 through No. 3 doubles teams? Not much luck either. They didn’t win a game, but they put up a fight and that’s all Guevara could ask for.
Cuevas was also part of the No. 1 doubles team along with Reyna Valdez, but the two had some miscommunication issues and fell 0-8 to Redwood’s No. 1 doubles team of Elizabeth Gormley and Rebecca Lechtman.
As the girls came off the court in defeat, they were disappointed. A good disappointed. They were disappointed because they strongly believed that they could (and should) have done better against their opponent.
When Guevara asked for their set scores, the girls murmured, “I could have done better,” or “I don’t want to talk about it,” but with an attitude of expected success.
Hanford West sophomore Neissa Garcia was one of those girls who expects to do well and win.
“I did all right, I could have improved on some stuff,” Garcia said candidly.
When asked what Garcia and Cuevas were looking forward to in their next match, both said the same thing: winning.
Hanford West will get another chance at a win on Monday when they face Golden West (4-6, 4-3 WYL) on the road. Redwood will head home for a match against Lemoore (11-3, 6-1) — the top two teams in the West Yosemite League.
“I think the next two matches are going to be really good for us,” Guevara said. “I think we’re going to be able to pull off that win and really kind of compete for tomorrow and the next day and the next day.”