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Vista tennis opens league play with two wins

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The Vista del Lago varsity girls’ tennis team began defense of its Capital Athletic League title last week with two convincing victories over El Camino and Christian Brothers.

On Sept. 19, the Eagles dropped a total of 15 games on their way to a 9-0 win over El Camino. Thursday’s match against Christian Brothers was more competitive, but the Eagles still prevailed in all nine matches.

“We’re off to a great start, but I don’t want the team thinking it’s going to be like this all season,” Vista coach Marc Erwin said. “We have some tough matches coming up soon, and we need to be ready.”

Sophomore Sofia Smith definitely looks ready. Moving up to No. 1 this season after playing No. 3 last year, Smith opened her season with two 6-0, 6-0 wins. Senior Regan Martell also was very impressive at No. 6, winning her opening match 6-0, 6-0, and following that with a 6-1, 6-1 decision.

In recent years, the Eagles (6-4 overall, 2-0 CAL) have been very good at the top of the lineup, but haven’t had the depth to close out big matches, especially in the playoffs the past two seasons. Erwin said that could change this year.

“I’ve never been able to say this before, but I’m excited about our doubles teams this year,” he said. “I could tell during tryouts that the girls had put in a lot of work over the offseason, and I think we have a chance to be really good deep into the lineup.”

Freshman Sophia Ammons and sophomore Ellie Nguyen comprise the Eagles’ No. 3 doubles team. Nguyen moved up to varsity after playing in a few exhibition matches last year, and the duo has been particularly strong. They won their first two league matches 6-0, 6-1 and 6-3, 6-1.

“I had one coach during the preseason ask me why they weren’t playing No. 1 doubles. They’ve come together as a team that quickly,” Erwin said. “I guarantee, at some point this season the entire match is going to come down to them, and they’re going to pull it out for us.”

Vista returns to action this week against Casa Roble and Mira Loma before a highly anticipated showdown with Rio Americano Oct. 3 at Vista.