Girls’ tennis preserves 18-year reign at All-City Finals

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Originally published on November 19, 2015

Sophomore Olivia Pan volleys her shot during her doubles match with her partner sophomore Erica Zee at All-City Finals against the Washington Eagles on Nov. 6. Pan and Zee won their match 6–4, 6–2. The Cardinals swept their competition overall 7–0. Photo by Aida Irving

Defending its title for 18 consecutive years, the girls’ tennis team clinched gold against the Washington Eagles at the Academic Athletic Association’s All-City Finals on Nov. 6.

Following their sweep against the Balboa Buccaneers in their last league match, the Cardinals repeated their feat, dominating the Eagles 7–0.

For singles, junior Kristine Pau won her match 6–0, 6–0, followed by senior co-captain Rebecca Chen 6–0, 6–1, freshman Arina Caliman 6–1, 6–1 and sophomore Laura Berkovsky 6–0, 6–0.

“They will improve no matter what happens. But consistency is always a major thing that anybody in tennis needs to improve upon.”

Despite winning 6–0, 6–0, nationally ranked Pau still saw improvements she could have made in her performance. “I was pretty consistent today, but I think I can improve by coming up more, doing some more volleys and being more aggressive.”

Doubles duo seniors Camilia Kacimi and Kelsey Rasmussen won 6–2, 6–2, with sophomores Erica Zee and Olivia Pan 6–4, 6–2 following, and seniors Esther Lam and Josephine Dang finishing the game with a close match 6–2, 7–6. “Overall, the entire team did very well,” Lam said. “We won and it was a pretty good sweep, but we just have to keep each other up and have a lot more positivity in the team.”

The team went undefeated this season, winning all six of their league games. After winning gold at All-City Finals, the Cardinals move on to the California Interscholastic Federation NorCals tournament.

As for next season, assistant coach John Mohr hopes the team improve their overall consistency in match play. “They will improve no matter what happens,” Mohr said. “But consistency is always a major thing that anybody in tennis needs to improve upon.”

The team also wants to build its team unity with bonding exercises throughout next season. “I think we did really well as a whole, but I feel like we can become more of a team next year,” Berkovsky said. “I think we can just support each other more and cheer each other on more.”