ELK GROVE Ñ With the regular season over, the Davis High girls tennis team is looking for any edge it can get for the Sac-Joaquin Section team playoffs, which begin next week.
Since the defending section runner-up Blue Devils are not familiar with the teams they are going to face Ñ and donÕt know what kind of player each of their players will be matched up with Ñ getting experience going against a variety of strong opponents is the best preparation.
Some of DHSÕ top players had that chance on Tuesday as they competed in the Delta Valley Conference singles championships at the Laguna Racquet Club. Sophomore InŽs Guinard not only got the added of experience of some high-level matches, but also took second place and will advance to the section singles tournament on Nov. 5.
Second-seeded GuinardÕs only loss on Tuesday came in the title match against No. 1 Tiffany Pham of Laguna Creek, 6-1, 6-2. Guinard defeated Lisa Banh of Elk Grove, 6-0, 6-0, in the quarterfinals, then downed No. 3 seed Kacey Johnson of the Thundering Herd by the same score in the semis, before falling to Pham.
ÒTiffany is probably the single best performer in the section,Ó Devil head coach Sally Hosley said. ÒSheÕs basically error-free and just so focused; she is really tough to beat.Ó
Pham also knocked out DavisÕ Anna Klavins in the quarterfinals. Klavins had beaten Michelle Chen of Monterey Trail, 6-0, 6-1 in the first round and was put in a tough position by her seeding.
ÒI thought Anna could have been seeded fourth and she was playing really well,Ó Hosley said. ÒShe could have made the semis if she had not had to play (Pham so early).Ó
The Blue DevilsÕ third entrant, Grace Landon, started off with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Steph Wong of Franklin. In a quarterfinal matchup against the third-seeded Johnson, Landon fought hard in the first set and led 5-4 at one point before losing 7-5. Johnson then turned it on to take the second set as well.
ÒGrace had a great showing,Ó Hosley said.
Even though DHS performed well at the DVC singles, Hosley believes her squad may put up an even stronger showing Thursday at the DVC doubles tournament.
The Blue Devils will send three teams back to the Laguna Racquet Club, all with one thing in common, a Cajandig sister. Mari Cajandig will be joined on the No. 1 duo by Naomi Wainwright, Ceci Cajandig and Ginny Hartz will team up at No. 2 and the third squad will be made up of Briki Cajandig and Caron Miller.
ÒI think we are going to do great in doubles,Ó Hosley said. ÒI have a feeling that we will be sending two Davis teams on to the section doubles tournament.Ó