The Del Norte girls tennis team finally wrapped up what was originally scheduled to be its first meet of the season against Fortuna. The Warriors entered Saturday’s meet with a 2-0 lead and went on to win the meet 7-2 over the Huskies.
Del Norte and Fortuna officially kicked off the meet on Sept. 2, but play was suspended after less than two hours due to poor air quality. Prior to the suspension of the match, Diana Loban and Castley Thao had already completed singles victories in the No. 2 and No. 3 singles matches.
The Warriors used a bit of an unusual lineup against Fortuna. Del Norte’s regular No. 2 player Jasmine Pearson had moved up to the No. 1 singles match on Sept. 2 because the Warriors’ regular No. 1 player — Bailee Drown — was taking on Ferndale’s No. 1 player at the same time.
Although Ferndale didn’t make the trip to Crescent City, Pearson stayed in the No. 1 spot on Saturday, picking up a 6-0, 6-0 victory.
“She played smart and she employed some of things that we have been working on with the more skilled kids,” Escobar said. “We have been working on coming to the net, forcing yourself on them and dictating play. She did that during the singles match.”
In addition to Pearson playing the No. 1 singles match, the Warriors put Robyn Saatzer in to play No. 5 singles and Hayden Thornton came in to play No. 6 singles. Although both girls lost their matches, Escobar was pleased to get them into some competitive matches for the first time this year.
Emily Freeney also made it into the Warriors’ lineup, replacing the absent Aliyah Rafalowski in the No. 3 doubles match with Danika Scott for a 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 victory.
“Since we were missing some kids, we put in three new girls in the No. 5 and No. 6 spots and in the No. 3 doubles,” Escobar said. “It was nice to see them in competitive situations. We just wanted to see them go out there, keep the ball in play and learn how to play someone other than their teammate.”
Drown came back into the lineup for the No. 1 doubles, teaming up with Pearson for a 6-4, 6-1 victory.
Thao and Loban continued their dominance in the No. 2 doubles spot with a 6-0, 6-0 victory.
“It was nice to see how steady Loban and Castley Thao were in the No. 2 doubles match,” Escobar said. “They are almost like machines and they play well together. They haven’t really run into anybody that is challenging yet in the No. 2 doubles spot.”
With the win, the Warriors improve to 5-0 overall this season. Del Norte will be back in action against the Huskies again today, this time in Fortuna. Del Norte will make up its meet against Arcata on Thursday in Crescent City. Both meets are schedule to begin at 3:30 p.m.