The Pitman High tennis squad faced off against Central California Conference opponents Merced High on Thursday at home in what was a critical league match. Unfortunately for the Pride, it was the Bears that emerged victorious in the 5-4 match.
“Merced is very tough, they are well coached, have wonderful players that are dedicated to tennis, they went out there and hit their shots. They are always a tough match. If you don’t bring your A game just like everybody else in the CCC, you will lose,” Pitman head coach Doug Reimers said. “It’s disappointing and a step back but hopefully it will make us stronger in the future.”
One of the few bright spots of the day for the Pride was the number one singles player, Mackenzie Nordahl, who was able to win her match in straight sets, 6-3 and 6-3. Nordahl was able to keep calm as she dominated her opponent Isabel Serafin.
“Mackenzie had a breakthrough match. She made everyone so proud because she figured out to play the game to her strengths and to stay patient when her opponent became crafty, tricky and making every point difficult,” Reimers said of Nordahl. “She was able to pick up the win against somebody who beat her pretty well the last time we played in Merced. She finally figured out how to be herself.”
With a 5-4 record thus far, the Pride sit in second place, but who knows for how much longer in the very competitive CCC and with only three more matches coming up.
“Had we won this match, we would have had a solid control of the number two seed in the CCC,” Reimers said. “It’s going to be really close to see who will be number two in playoffs. We let a huge opportunity slip through our fingers.”
The Pride’s number five singles Sahemi Castorena won her match by a score of 6-2 and 6-1. Number six Macey Loomis topped her opponent, winning 6-4 and 6-2.
On the doubles side, Ruby Hernandez and Alicia Ramirez, who are the number one doubles team, were the only doubles team to win by a score of 6-3 and 6-3.
Next, the Pride will travel to Buhach Colony for a game at 3 p.m. Tuesday.