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Pride tennis tops Bulldogs
Pitman tennis
Chuc Luu of Pitman gets ready to hit the ball during Tuesday’s 6-3 win over Turlock High. Luu was one of five singles players to notch wins over Turlock (EDDIE RUIZ/The Journal).

It was a busy week for Pitman and Turlock High’s girls tennis teams. 

They kicked off their annual crosstown match on Tuesday, the first meeting of the year, where the Pride pulled off an upset that was over a decade in the making, while they closed the week on Thursday in the junior varsity league mid-season tournament. 

In Tuesday’s matchup, it was Pitman that managed to come away with a 6-3 win over Turlock, the first in over a decade. 

“I knew Pitman would be a tough opponent,” said Turlock head coach Linda Bejaran. “They outplayed us that day and we look forward to the next match. Our players and the Pitman players battled, demonstrated good sportsmanship and pushed each other to play their best.” 

Turlock tennis
Turlock High’s Ashley Huh fell to Chuc Luu of Pitman on Tuesday, 6-1, 6-2 (EDDIE RUIZ/The Journal).

The win became a monumental one, as Pitman took down Turlock for the first time since the 2005-06 season. 

“I am really proud of the team for the win over a tough team like Turlock,” said Pitman head coach Jeff Hayes.

Following the win, Pitman’s current record in the Central California Athletic League is 3-2. 

Turlock’s CCAL record is currently 2-3. 

“In the second part of our season we will go out strong. Our goal is to make the teams we play earn that win,” said Bejaran. “We want to force them to hit a lot of balls and fight for their points. We hope our hard work and tenacity will result in more wins in the second part of our season.” 

Before thinking of the final half of league, they had to square off for the first time this season with their crosstown rivals.

Pitman dominated the singles side after they won all but at the No. 5 spot. 

In fact, four of the five singles victories came in straight sets. 

Turlock’s Claudia Chan won at the No. 5 singles spot while their No. 1 and No. 2 doubles teams won their matches in straight sets. 

For Pitman, Katrina Hawley, Anh Luu, Chuc Luu, Jackie Mendez and Julia Carlson each notched a win on the singles side. 

Turlock’s No. 1 doubles team of Lizbeth Soltero and Alex Gonzales notched a win over Pitman.

The team of Noella Younan and Hannah Sahota won their match for Turlock at the No. 2 doubles spot. 

Pitman’s Simran Kaur and Gisele Caballero won their match at the No. 3 doubles spot after a final score of, 6-1, 6-3.

“I feel our girls have been fighting the fight. Every time they step on the court, I know they are giving their best to support our team,” Bejaran added. “Obviously, we would like to win every match, but sometimes you learn more when you don't win. As a team we talk about how we handle our losses and the importance of remaining positive, being a good sport and being fighters on the court. I have a team of fighters. I'm proud of them and the effort they give each time we step on to the court.”

Turlock’s next match will be on the road at Gregori High at 3 p.m. Tuesday. 

The next CCAL match for Pitman will be a home game against Modesto High at 3 p.m. Tuesday.