Foothill boys tennis roundup: Seasons end for Valencia, Saugus, West Ranch

Valencia first doubles teammates Evan Balmain, left, and Chan Gi Kim, right, high-five between points during a CIF-Southern Section playoff tennis match against Oak Park at Valencia on Friday, May 12, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal
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Valencia High boys tennis doubles player Chan Gi Kim took five AP tests this year as a junior.

But he still felt pressure heading into the second round of the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 playoffs against Oak Park, the No. 1 team in the Coastal Canyon League.

“My favorite part (of the season) was playoffs because there was that pressure that we’re going to get eliminated and since it’s (my partner) Evan’s senior year, I didn’t want to let him down,” Kim said. “So I just threw everything I had into the match.”

The intensity proved to be too much for the Vikings, however, who fell to the Eagles 12-6 at home on Friday.

Valencia first singles player Batis Golestany prepares to return a hit to his Oak Park opponent during a CIF-Southern Section playoff tennis match at Valencia on Friday, May 12, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

Kim and his partner, Evan Balmain, had the most successful day, winning all three sets 7-5, 6-0, 6-4.

“(Oak Park), they hit the ball really hard and they like to pace so we kind of played smarter doubles and just went with the smarter shots instead of going big like them,” Balmain said. “They were trying to get in our heads the whole time and we kept our composure and knew how to win.”

Jackson Boxall and Stephen Thay, the Foothill League doubles champions, won two sets 6-4 and 6-0.

No singles player won a set on the afternoon.

Valencia (13-6-0 overall) was within striking distance after the second set, trailing 7-4.

“We were just telling each other to keep our momentum up even though it was tight,” Balmain said. “We still were in it and we had a chance to win and we all just kept fighting.”

La Quinta 11, Saugus 7

In the second round of the CIF-SS Division 3 playoffs, Erin Pang won two sets in singles 6-3 and 6-1. In doubles, Brighten Wan and James Phan won two sets 6-1 and 6-4.

The Centurions finished the season 15-5 overall.

Peninsula 12, West Ranch 6

The Wildcats end the season at 16-4 overall after falling in the second round of the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs.

Jake Anderson and Quincy Walter-Eze won two sets in doubles 6-3 and 6-2, while Aristo Turalakey and Robert Kim won two of their own 7-6, 6-2.

Noah Morrow played Peninsula’s entire starting lineup, including nationally-ranked Connor Hance.

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