Varsity remains perfect with two wins

The Taft High varsity girls’ tennis team won its first-ever South Sequoia League title after shutting out McFarland Tuesday and Arvin Wednesday  at home.

The two 9-0 wins brought Taft’s league record to a perfect 13-0 with one league game left on Tuesday at home against Cesar Chavez. Taft won the first meeting, 9-0.

Bakersfield Christian is two games back at 11-2 and Wasco is in third at 9-4.

Not to be outdone, Taft’s JV team beat its closest competition, Arvin, 6-3, on Wednesday.

Taft’s JV team also has a perfect 11-0 record and clinched its first solo league championship. The JV had tied for the league title in the past, but won it outright this year.

The varsity matches were one-sided, straight-set wins with Taft outscoring Arvin, 108-16, in games and McFarland, 108-12.

McFarland did not field a JV team.

The JV game with Arvin did provide some drama. Number 1 Haven Cook beat Alondra Soto, 6-1, 6-3.

Jen River beat Danielle Castro, 6-2, 6-2. Gloria Okafor beat Jennifer Hernandez, 6-1, 6-0. But the teams split the remainder of the matches. Maria Sanchez lost to Alicia Clemente, 6-3, 6-2. Liliana Noriega beat Alyssa Hilts, 6-1, 6-0.

But, Karina Amaya lost an overtime tiebreaker to Joanna Hernandez. Amaya lost the first set, 6-0, but rallied to win the second set, 7-6 (7-3), to send the match to a third-set tiebreaker, which Amaya lost, 11-9.

Cook and Rivera won the match at No. 1 doubles when they defeated Soto and Hilts, 6-1, 6-1. Cook improved her season record to a team best 29-1.

Number 3 Okafor and No. 9 Destany Rocha lost in three sets to No. 3 Hernandez and No. 4 Clemente, 4-6, 6-1, 10-4. Paige Gaylord and Lupe Saloman lost the first set to Vitali Cruz and Adrianna Guitierrez, 6-0, but rallied to win the second, 6-3, and the third set, 10-5.

Taft’s varsity plays in the Lewis Cup Friday and Saturday at Bakersfield High School against Centennial and Tehachapi on Friday and BHS and Monache of Porterville on Saturday, before closing out the league season on Tuesday against Chavez.

Both the varsity and JV games will be played in Taft. That will be the JV’s last game of the season.

Still to come for the varsity team are the league and valley individual finals and the Valley team finals.