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Section qualifiers ousted on first day of tourney
Manteca doubles team advanced to second round
tenn-SJS-file- Rausa
Sierra High senior Kevin Rausa competed well but was eliminated in the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-II Tournament in Roseville Thursday. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO

Manteca High doubles partners Alex Barragan and Xavier Lopez were the only local representatives to win a match in the first day of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-II Individual Boys Tennis Tournament at Johnson Ranch Racquet Club in Roseville Thursday.

The city’s top singles player, Kevin Rausa of Sierra, dropped a three-set marathon in the opening round, and East Union’s Ricky Peloso was swept by a seeded contender in the second round after a first-round bye.

Also competing were Max Angelo and Oral Nunis, Manteca’s No. 1 doubles team during the Valley Oak League dual season. They were also one and done.

Barragan, Lopez and Angelo played their final matches for Manteca, leaving the successful program some gaping holes in the future.

“They will be missed and tough to replace,” he said. “They should be proud of the four years of tennis they put in. They have to look at the bigger picture, because one result doesn’t define them as players.”

Barragan and Lopez opened play against a tandem from Vanden, which took second in the Solano County Athletic Conference.

The VOL champs were in top form, winning, 6-2, 6-3. But in the second round they met up with fourth-seeded John Fenton and Kent Naraghi of Central Catholic, losing 3-6, 2-6.

“Xavier and Alex played really well today, they just ran up against a real tough team that I think has a chance to win the tournament,” Fontana said.

The Angelo-Nunis combo finished fourth in the VOL Tournament and advanced as an alternate after the runner-up Oakdale duo and Sierra’s Josh Weland and Joel Boling bowed out because of Advanced Placement testing.

Angelo and Nunis dropped a hard-fought 4-6, 6-7 match to the SCAC champion from Vanden.

“It was definitely a respectable result for Max and Oral,” Fontana said. “It was close, they couldn’t get that extra point they needed to advance.”

Rausa, a senior who was named the Bulletin’s All-Area Tennis Player of the Year in 2010, got off to a hot start against Vanden’s Greg Deleon. He swept the first set 6-0 but dropped the next two 4-6, 2-6 in what ended up being a two-hour match.

Peloso, who led East Union to the VOL team title this year, was able to compete at the section tournament because conference champion Logan Staggs of Kimball was injured.

The East Union standout got the first-round bye because his opponent was taking an AP test, but he did get a good look at No. 2 seed Wyatt Brown of Rio Americano.

Peloso lost 2-6, 5-7 and will get another shot at Brown Monday when East Union heads to Rio Americano for a third-round showdown in the SJS Team Tournament.