Paly girls’ tennis breezes through Mountain View, 6-1

Alex Murray, Staff Writer

The Palo Alto High School girls’ team (5-0, 1-0) continued its undefeated streak after its dominant performance against Mountain View, finishing 6-1.

Team captain and no. 1 singles player Aashli Budhiraja (‘14)  won in straight sets (6-2,6-0), despite an interfering wind that other players attested as a hindrance to their play.

 “It took some time to get used to [the wind],” Budhiraja said. “But it didn’t really affect me much.”

No. 2 singles player Avankia Narayan (‘17), no. 3 singles player  Felicia Wang (‘15) and no. 4 singles player Julianne Le (‘15) also all won in straight sets, (6-0,6-2), (6-0,6-0) and (6-1,6-0), respectively.

No. 2 doubles players Kelsey Wang (‘16) and team co-captain Hollie Kool (‘14) won in straight sets (6-0,6-1) while no.3 doubles players Sarah Tayeri and Madeline Lee also won in straight sets, (6-3,6-1).

A highlighted match of the day was played by no. 1 doubles team Caroline Nore (‘14) and Samantha Dewees (‘15) who played a three-set match. Paly lost the first set (3-6), but fought back hard after the break in play, and won the next set (6-4).

The pair  went back and forth, breaking their opponents, until they were deadlocked at (5-5). Mountain View was then able to break ahead to win the match with a final set score of (10-7).

Overall, Coach Andy Harader was pleased with the team’s performance and specifically, how they dealt with the poor playing conditions.

“I told the girls at the beginning, ‘hey, if you focus on anything, focus on the wind,’” Harader said. “They’ve been practicing really well…it was just a matter of having them being confident and feeling like it was going right for them.”

Kool echoed her coaches’ thoughts.

“We have had to play [in windy conditions] before,” she said. “I think with warming up, we got used to the whole rhythm of it.”

The win against Mountain View continues the Lady Vikes’ undefeated streak and Coach Harader thinks the momentum is easy to maintain.

“It’s easy [to keep up the streak] when you’re undefeated,” Harader said. “It’s like, come on, let’s put another one in the bank.’”

Next up for the Vikings is the Paly Invitational tournament, being held this Saturday. Kool feels confident heading into the tournament, a series that the Vikings have not won since 2009.

“I think we’re going in enthusiastically and we all feel pretty solid.”