HANFORD — Sierra Pacific’s season came to an end on Wednesday with a 7-2 home loss to Exeter in the first round of the CIF Central Section Division V playoffs.
“The other team was just a little bit better and a little bit more poised than us,” Sierra Pacific coach Ken Gong said. “We gave it the best shot that we could and unfortunately we came out on the losing end.”
No. 8 seed Sierra Pacific (9-6, 5-5 ESL) kept it close to start the match, but couldn’t keep up against the 9-seed Monarchs.
“Most of the girls were psyched up for it, they played about as well as they could, no more, no less, and the other team was just a little bit better,” Gong said.
Sierra Pacific’s No. 3 tennis player Tin Yu Gong and No. 4 Herlinda Barrios picked up the points for the Golden Bears on Wednesday. Tin Yu Gong won 7-5, 6-1 and Barrios won 6-4, 7-6 (7-2).
No. 1 Aleja Acosta lost her match 6-1, 6-2, No. 2 Geanna Carrizales lost 6-2, 6-2, No. 5 Allison Martella lost 6-3, 6-1 and No. 6 Mallory Kuhn lost 6-2, 6-2.
The Golden Bears lost all three doubles matches. The No. 1 team of Carizzales and Gong lost 6-2, 6-4 (10-8) and No. 3 Shatera Yamaura and Kuhn lost 6-2, 6-1. The No. 2 team of Barrios and Acosta lost 8-4 in a pro set.
The Golden Bears’ last playoff victory was in 2016 when they advanced to the semifinals after defeating Dos Palos 5-4 in the quarterfinals.
Even with the loss, Gong said he was pleased with the team’s performance in the match and throughout the season.
“I was very proud of the girls this year because they had certain goals and they strived as best they could,” Gong said. “They were focused and they really wanted it.”
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Exeter will face either No. 5 seed Roosevelt or No. 12 seed Golden Valley in the quarterfinals next Tuesday at 4 p.m.
5 Lemoore vs. 12 Hoover
LEMOORE — Just like last season, 5 seed Lemoore defeated 12 seed Hoover in the first round of the CIF Central Section Division III playoffs.
The Tigers (12-8, 5-5 WYL) won 7-2 on their home courts and wrapped up the match early by winning five out of six singles.
Lemoore No. 1 Aliana Cabuhat won 7-6 (7-3), 6-3 and No. 3 Christina Nguyen won 6-1, 6-2. No. 4 Sophia Gregorio made quick work of her opponent going 6-1, 6-1, while No. 5 Louelle Braga conceded only one game 6-1, 6-0.
In doubles, the Tigers took two of three matches starting with Cabuhat and Paez as the No. 1 team. They won 8-3 and the No. 3 team of Sarah Raber and Nicole Carrillo won 8-0.
No. 2 Jenny Paez dropped her match 6-0, 6-3 and the No. 2 doubles team of Alexis Escarcega and Taylor Areias lost 8-3.
Lemoore advances to the quarterfinals for a fourth season in a row and will face No. 4 seed Mt. Whitney (16-7, 4-5 WYL) next Tuesday at 5 p.m. The Pioneers will host the match.
The two league foes split the season series. The Pioneers won the first match 8-1, but the Tigers won the second meeting 5-4.