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Nguyen, top doubles maintain perfect records
Sierra High’s Vannida Nguyen sends a forehand shot to Manteca No. 1 Marlen Kurzhals Tuesday at Manteca High. Nguyen won a tightly-contested 7-5 set to keep her Valley Oak League record perfect. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO
It was a matchup between the city’s top best singles players, and for now title belongs to Sierra High’s Vannida Nguyen.

Nguyen edged Marlen Kurzhals 7-5 to highlight the Timberwolves’ 12-3 win Tuesday at the Manteca High tennis courts. Kurzhals, a foreign-exchange student from Germany, has just one other defeat — a tiebreaking loss to Oakdale’s No. 1 Elise Derby.

Sierra (4-1) rebounded well all around after suffering its first team loss last Thursday to still-undefeated Weston Ranch, 9-6.

The unbeaten Nguyen went on to win her next two sets 6-1 and 6-1. She and Kurzhals will meet again Oct. 7 at the Union Road Tennis Courts, but under the more traditional best-of-three-sets format.

Also undefeated are Sierra’s No. 1 doubles partners Stephanie Vanni and Maryann Baker. They cruised to 10-0 and 10-2 wins. Vanni represents one half of the VOL’s doubles championship tandem. Her 2009 teammate, Jena Anderson, since graduated.

Maddie Banks and Kelly Fuentes also went 2-0 Tuesday, edging Manteca’s Kelli Lane and Valarie Monarrez 10-7 before dispatching Adaeze Nkwocha and Rosa Zou, 10-4.

Sierra No. 2 singles player Ann McFerren squeaked out a 7-5 win over Wendy Lin before dropping a 1-6 set to Kurzhals. She finished up the day with a 6-0 shutout of Vanessa Rasmusson, a first-year sophomore who competed in her first live match.

Kurzhals and Lin both defeated Sierra’s Natalie Ray by respective 6-1 and 6-0 margins. Ray beat Rasmusson 6-0.

Both teams head into tough matches Thursday: Weston Ranch visits Manteca (1-4), while Sierra plays host to Sonora.

Oakdale 9, East Union 6
At Oakdale, Lancer No. 1 singles player Ashley Duenas put forth the surprise performance of the day. She claimed all three of her sets, including a 6-1 win over Oakdale’s top player, Elise Derby.

Duenas also defeated Emily Triton 6-1, and Lindsay Dunn, 6-2.

“It was her best overall match so far,” EU coach Julia Bylow said. “We knew she had the potential, so it’s nice to see her playing really well. We’re hoping that she just continues that streak and gains confidence from this match.”

Accounting for the rest of the 1-4 Lancers’ points were doubles teammates Shalane Jackson and Klasey Kachalkin, who gutted out 11-9 and 10-7 wins.

W. Ranch 13, Kimball 2
In Tracy, the Cougars advanced their league record to 5-0 in impressive fashion.

Leading the way was Nicole Bowen with 6-1, 6-2 and 6-0 wins. Weston Ranch swept all doubles sets. Ly Hoang and Cristina Poklay coasted to a pair of 10-2 wins, while Chelsea Olitan and Nancy Nguyen won both of their matches, 10-3.

Vy Hoang (6-2, 6-0) and Aareolle Albino (7-6 [7-0], 6-2) won two of three sets.

“This was a nice, well-rounded win by us,” Cougar coach Jason Furtado said. “It feels good to have your entire team running on all cylinders, and we are working hard to keep this momentum going. We know that as the season progresses, wins are going to be more and more difficult to come by.”