The Sierra High girls tennis team’s postseason run rested on the shoulders of its No. 2 doubles tandem of Barbara Baxter and Kelsey Wells.
With all eyes on the final match, the Timberwolf duo clutched up for a 6-1, 2-6, 6-3 win over Ceres’ Gabby Blandino and Laura Cahill. The overall 5-4 victory catapults Sierra into today’s second-round matchup with McClatchy in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II team tournament.
“I am very proud of everyone’s fight and determination,” said Sierra coach Vanessa Wells. “Everyone competed very well.”
Sierra, which improved to 16-4 overall, needed another three-set result to fall its way in singles. That came from Maddie Banks, who edged out Kiran Kainth 6-1, 3-6, 6-4 in the No. 4 contest. That gave the Timberwolves a 4-3 advantage at the time, leaving it up to the Baxter-Wells combo or the No. 3 team of Liana Bassett and Simran Thind.
Bianca Deanda and Angelica Slater kept the visiting Bulldogs in the running with their 7-5, 6-2 win over Bassett-Thind.
Naomi Nunis won the competitive No. 2 singles match against Kaylee Donovan, 7-5, 6-2. Anna Cardenas took out Manpreet Bahia, 6-3, 6-0. Brenda Padilla and Emma Hunter, Sierra’s top doubles duo, coasted past Justine and Jolyce Vega, 6-1-6-0.
Valley Oak League singles champion Vannida Nguyen battled tough in her 2-6, 1-6 loss to Marifer Ochoa. Annie Banks (2-6, 4-6) and Rosie Reynolds (4-6, 4-6) also dropped competitive matches.
Sierra, the No. 2 team out of the VOL, squares off with Metropolitan Conference champion McClatchy in Sacramento today starting at 2 p.m.