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BUFF STREAK COMES TO END
MHS tennis playoff appearance streak ends at 11 years
MHS tennis 44444
The Buffaloes DeAngelo Caldera won his match, defeating Jonathan Loayza in three hard-fought set. - photo by Photo by WAYNE THALLANDER

All good things must end. 

Manteca High boys tennis coach Frank Fontana said just that following his team’s 5-4 loss to visiting Kimball on Monday.

He was referencing to the 11-straight playoff appearance by his Buffaloes, including last year’s Sac-Joaquin Section Division III crown.

Kimball wrapped up first place in the Valley Oak League, going 14-0 after the hard-fought win in the season finale at MHS.

“We lost to the top team twice by the same (5-4) score,” said Fontana, who needed his team to beat Oakdale last Friday for a shot at third place, based on the tie-breaking formula, for any post-season hopes.

Instead, the Buffaloes (9-5 VOL) had their fate sealed prior to meeting up with the Jaguars, in turn, settling for fourth place in league.

Meanwhile, it was a good day for Solman Aniss.

Manteca’s No. 1 singles player once again faced off against Logan Le of Kimball. For the second time, he won, 7-5, 6-2.

“I lost to Logan three times last year,” Aniss recalled. “Today, I just tried to stay aggressive and was consistent with my forehand.”

He won’t face Le in today’s VOL Singles Tournament hosted by Kimball. The Jaguars’ top singles player will play doubles alongside his brother Lance Le.

The league’s Doubles tourney is scheduled for Wednesday.

“I’m hoping to go further this year,” said Aniss, who is considered one of the favorites to advance to the singles championship round on Thursday. “I’d rather be playing (in the postseason) in the team event.”

DeAngelo Caldera, Manteca’s No 4 singles, along with the doubles team of No. 1 Niko Plares / Tait Hougen and No. 2 Ravpreet Grewal / Kayson Neduvakkattu also scored wins against Kimball.

Caldera defeated Jonathan Loaya in three hard-fought sets, 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-2.

Plares / Hougen also needed three sets to get past Brandon Baste / Allen Vocal, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5.

Grewal / Neduvakkattu defeated Austin Almiranez / Jacob Febre in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2.

Kimball’s No. 3 Jashan Singh / Connor Sweeny won what turned out to be the decider, beating Ryan Foo / Kiersten Melan, 6-2, 6-3.

Prior to that, Lance Le rolled past Ma in two sets, 6-3, 6-3.

Sahil Thakur edged out Manteca’s No. 3 singles Kevin Lin, 6-2, 6-4.

The Jaguars’ No. 5 singles Chance Mizuno slipped past Harshawn Singh, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2.

Paolo Acosta of Kimball needed three sets to get past Manteca’s No. 6 player Nick Pio, 6-4, 4-6, 6-1.

Ripon Christian 9, Turlock Christian 0

The visiting Eagles were forced to forfeit their girls No. 1 and both girls doubles in the Southern League match. 

Liam Kelly and Ed DeJung won for the Knights boys singles and Taylor Alger for the girls singles. The Ripon Christian boys doubles teams of Josh Tatton-Noah O’Neal and Luke Mensonices-Cullen Buriss both won as did the missed doubles team of Matthijs Moret-Vanessa Vander  Helm.

“We are going to finish in the middle of the pack in the Southern League,” Kinghts coach Mark Hoeksema said. “We have some young players so we are excited for the next couple of years.” 

Trans-Valley League

Ripon 6, Escalon 3

The Indians stayed in the thick of the TVL co-ed battle with their victory against Escalon.

Ripon (5-3 TVL) was led by No. 1 singles player Philip Carlson, who needed three sets to get past Sahil Prasad, 6-1, 3-6, 6-2.

Sam Brown also won, handling Jack Fitzgerald, Escalon’s No. 2 player, in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2.

Lillianna Trevino, the Indians’ No. 1 girls singles player, swept Amanda Salvador, 6-3, 6-3.

Ripon’s No. 2 singles player Mia Ponsiano rallied past Courtney Ney, 1-6, 6-1, 6-1.

In doubles, Ripon’s Manuel Ponce / Nathan Salavatorelli (4-6, 7-5, 6-4) and the mixed team of Evan Gibson / Amanda Westley (6-1, 6-4) were also winners.