Yok Chai Ma and Jonas Mueller are two wins away from making history for the Manteca boys tennis team.
Seeded No. 1 for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II Individual Tournament, the Buffaloes’ doubles tandem swept past its first two opponents Monday at Johnson Ranch Racquet Club in Roseville.
“We had a couple of days practice to work on volleys and our doubles play,” Manteca coach Frank Fontana said. “Today, it really showed.”
His top two singles players had not teamed together until their dominant run to the Valley Oak League doubles crown.
They opened with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Will Bryan and Brady Stephens of Pioneer (Woodland). Ma and Mueller then vanquished Placer’s Billy Bradick and Josh Lyons, 6-2, 6-0.
The Buffaloes face either No 4-seeded Shuv Chakravarty and Daniel Zhang of SJS Division IV team champion Mountain House, or Vista del Lago’s Felix Tong and Jason Zhang in the semifinal round today.
Manteca has never won a championship in the individual boys tournament, with three runners-up in singles and four in doubles. Ma, a freshman, has two older brothers who took second in the Section doubles tournament.
Isaac Buwalda and Jaden Bohn are returning to Oak Park Tennis Center in Stockton today for the semifinals, looking to be Ripon Christian’s first boys doubles champion since 1990.
They first defeated Galt’s Victor Arana and Brian Jimenez, 6-1, 6-2. They then held off Gilberto Flores and Raul Zepeda of Linden, 6-7, 6-3, 10-3.
The Knights’ girls doubles tandem of Ellie Dyt and Josie Bohn won their first match over El Dorado’s Fallon Tobin and Atiana Martinez 6-0, 6-3 but lost to top-seeded Lily Carson and Tonya Chronis of Argonaut in the quarterfinals.
Others who competed Monday but fell in the opening round were Ripon’s Sahal Gill and Ripon Christian’s Derek Van Elderen in boys singles, and Ripon Christian’s Sarah Vander Veen in girls singles.