After being postponed due to the massive rainfall on Tuesday, the much anticipated rivalry between Turlock and Pitman High grew higher as the two met on the tennis courts on Wednesday in a Central California Conference bout.
The Turlock boys’ tennis team remains undefeated at the halfway mark of the season at 6-0 after controlling the Pitman Pride by a score of 8-1.
“The kids are playing good and we have a strong team. We always look ahead and we’ll see what happens if the kids continue to compete well,” Turlock head coach Juan Alaniz said. “As long as the kids keep improving and working hard, especially with their attitudes, we will be good.”
All but two matches ended by way of straight sets. It was the number three and four singles players that went the distance, but only one came away with the upset for Pitman when Amir Ebrahimi bested Turlock’s Eilan Shabaz, 3-6, 6-3 and 6-3.
“We know that Turlock is a very well coached team. Not a big surprise that Turlock won today because they have very strong players and are tough from top to bottom. They have done very well in league already,” Pitman head coach Doug Reimers said. “They have been the strongest team in our league for many years in a row and they work hard, they deserve it.”
Pitman is now 3-3 for the season, but coach Reimers is confident that his team’s progress is coming along quickly.
“It is always a pleasure to play well coached and strong teams. It gives teams like ours looking to get better to improve and have some respect as top teams because we want to prove we can compete on the courts and hit the shots with a few more lessons learned,” Reimers said. “Our guys have fought and given all they can.”
With only one senior on the Turlock squad, Heath Rojas, along with a youthful team filled with underclassmen, the Bulldogs show promise for the future, but this year the squad is as strong and complete as any in the CCC.
All three of the doubles teams have yet to lose a match in league this year as they have been perfect thus far.
To prove that the Bulldogs have been great from top to bottom, the ‘Dogs number six singles player David Lazar is 6-0 after taking down Pitman’s Jason Moore.
“Our doubles have been well, still undefeated so I am very happy so far, we have very good depth all around,” Alaniz said.
Pitman’s second win nearly came in the number four singles bout as Greg Asher of the Pride won the first set 6-3, but Bulldogs’ Nick Vardeh won the next two 6-3 and 6-3.
“We are improving at number four, Greg Asher. He had a very spirited match,” Reimers said.