Girls’ tennis loses to Monta Vista in rematch

Avi Srinivasan, Senior Staff Writer

Junior Iris Li returns a shot from her opponent during the Vikings’ home game on Tuesday against Monta Vista High School. Although the Vikings lost, 2-5, Coach Andy Harader said he was pleased with the team’s performance as a whole. “I’m happy with the results,” Harader said. “I mean I know we didn’t win, but everybody had fun and I saw some improvement all the way around. So nothing not to like about that.” Photo: Avi Srinivasan

After winning its past two games, the Palo Alto High School varsity girls’ tennis team (6-3) fell to the Monta Vista Matadors (6-0), 2-5, on Tuesday during a home game.

Earlier this season, the Vikings lost to the Matadors with the same score. According to senior Myra Xu, she was anticipating a difficult match up.

“When my partner Noelle and I first stepped onto the court, we thought we were going to lose,” Xu said. “They [the Matadors] played really well from the warm-up and stuff. Also, Monta Vista, in general, they’re an undefeated team, and they’re probably the best in the league right now.”

Xu and her doubles partner, senior Noelle Burwell, won in doubles No.3 with a last-minute match point tiebreaker, bringing the Vikings their only win in the doubles category. According to Burwell, she and Xu make a strong team, with the duo being undefeated so far this season. 

“We’ve never played together before this season, so it’s been really great seeing how we do play together,” Burwell said. “It’s gone pretty well for us.”

While most of the other players lost their matches, some prevailed including freshmen Erin Li, who continued her recent streak of dominance in her singles No.2 match, winning both sets with scores of 6-1 and 6-0.

Coach Andy Harader said he wanted to let the players enjoy themselves rather than focusing on beating the top team in the league.

“To tell you the truth, I wasn’t planning on winning,” Harader said. “But, the girls went out there and played loose. They performed very well and they had fun doing it.” 

The team hopes to make the best of its remaining matches this season, according to Xu.

“It’s kind of nice to have this opportunity to play during COVID,” Xu said. “Overall, we just tried to have fun and we got a good result in the end [of the game], which is even better.”

The Vikings were to play next against the Homestead Mustangs away at 3:30 p.m. Thursday.