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Girls Tennis Wins First CIF Championship
Team photo of girls tennis players holding a plaque stating they are the 2021 Champions.

The JSerra Girls Tennis team's season came full circle last Friday, Nov. 12, defeating Foothill High School 10-8 to capture its first-ever CIF Championship. The Lions had lost to the Knights in their very first match of the season 6-12.

"In our first time against the Knights, they trounced us," said Head Coach Kirk Orahood. "We didn't have our full roster when we played them early in the season due to the transfer Sit Out Period, so when we showed up with our full lineup on Friday, I could see that the Foothill team look concerned because they were playing a different team. I told our girls that from that point on, we had this."

According to Orahood, the backbone of the team was in its double's lineup, which dominated the field of play on Friday. Sophomore Jazmine Aftabi and junior Gabrielle Basa swept all three of their sets while the duos of junior Anna Ciraci and freshman Aerin Fraize and juniors Kylie Davidson and Sophia Moncur each took two sets. On the single's side, it was sophomore Halle Parker who secured two crucial set wins.

Late in the match, leading 8-7, the Lions needed just two of the remaining three sets to clinch the win. Had the matches been tied 9-9, it would have gone to set scores to break the tie, which mathematically would have given the Lions the win as well. However, Orahood wanted to leave no doubt and win that 10th set to secure it. Davidson and Moncur took the 9th set, and minutes later it was Aftabi and Basa who clinched the 10th and final set point.

For Orahood, the Championship season was a bit of a surprise, given how young his team was, but he knew they had the talent to get there. "I think the key here for us is that our athletic programs mission of Transformational Coaching finally turned a corner for us. We had players playing for each other, parents who were supportive throughout, and we had no drama all season long. It was a special season and I am just so proud of all these girls."

Team photo of girls tennis players wearing all red tennis outfits.

For more JSerra Athletics news, visit jserraathletics.org.