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Weston Ranch still perfect in Valley Oak League
Weston Ranch No. 1 singles player Nicole Bowen continues a rally against Manteca’s Marlen Kurzhals with a tough return Thursday at Manteca High. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO
Weston Ranch High’s surprising run to start the Valley Oak League season continued Thursday with a 12-3 victory over host Manteca.

The Cougars (6-0) are now one win away from completing the first round of the conference schedule undefeated, though they’ll have to beat perennial contender Oakdale Tuesday at home to achieve that.

After the Oakdale match, Weston Ranch will see what it’s made of when playing under the best-of-three-sets format over the second half of league.

For now, Weston Ranch is queen of the round-robin style of play.

The biggest win for the Cougars Thursday came from No. 2 singles Vy Hoang, who upset Manteca No. 1 Marlen Kurzhals with a 6-0 stunner. Kurzhals had lost just two sets previously, and both were tiebreaking defeats to Sierra No. 1 Vannida Nguyen and Oakdale’s Elise Derby.

Hoang ended up 3-0 on the day.

Kurzhals did win her other two matches, 6-4 and 6-2, to earn the majority of the team points for the Buffaloes (1-5). Manteca’s No. 2 Wendy Lin won 6-2 against Weston Ranch No. 3 Aareolle Albino. Rosa Zou nearly stole her set against Hoang but was outlasted, 5-7.

Weston Ranch’s top singles player, Nicole Bowen, claimed 6-2 and 6-0 sets after falling to Kurzhals. Albino’s lone victory, 6-3, came against Zou.

It was all Cougars in doubles play. Ly Hoang and Cristina Poklay won both of its matches 10-1, while Chelsea Olitan and Nancy Nguyen twice won with 10-2 scores.

Sierra 8, Sonora 7
Vannida Nguyen’s undefeated streak ended Thursday, but Sierra (5-1) still snuck away with a one-point win over Sonora (4-2) in a battle of second-place teams.

Nguyen was edged 4-6 by Sonora No. 2 Brielle Snyder for her first loss in league. She squeaked out a 7-6 win over Brianna Mcree in the showdown of No. 1 singles players and won her final set 6-2.

Stephanie Vanni and Maryann Baker still remains undefeated after 10-3 and 10-5 victories.

Ann McFerran helped key the victory with 6-2 and 6-4 wins while dropping a 6-7 (5-7) heartbreaker to Snyder. The deciding point came from No. 3 Natalie Ray, who defeated Ankron, 7-5.

East Union 15, Lathrop 0
Stefanie Collins and Michelle Pintos debuted in the top-seven roster for EU (2-4) and contributed with three wins apiece. The best match of the day was between Pintos and Lathrop’s No. 1, Shauna Hinson, with Pintos pulling out the 7-6 (7-4) win.

Ashley Duenas pitched three shutouts. EU’s doubles teams — No. 1 Klassey Kachalkin and Shalane Jackson, No. 2 Deanna Stuber and Gigi Sellers — were also perfect with a combined four victories with 10-0 scores.