Wed10222014

News

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council continues to explore options to address parking constraints in the downtown triangle.

The Los Altos City Council last week held the first of two study sessions to discuss the potential construct...

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Schools

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A Los Altos High School student learns how to use robotic surgical equipment at the school’s Science and Technology Week event last year. Students can also attend hands-on presentations at this year’s event, w...

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Community

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display


Town Crier File Photo
Pirate Manor is once again scheduled to arrive in the front yard of Dane and Jill Glasgow’s home on Manor Way in Los Altos, just in time for Halloween.

Although not the Walking Dead, pirate skeletons have been brought to li...

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Sports

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Eric Reitmeir launches the ball over Mountain View High driver David Niehaus (2) and goalie Kenny Tang. The host Lancers won Friday’s non-league game 9-3.

There wasn’t a lot on the line Friday when ...

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Comment

Reeder, Fung for El Camino HCD: Editorial

The good news for the El Camino Healthcare District (formerly the El Camino Hospital District, for those still getting used to the new name) is that there is a contested election Nov. 4 for the district’s board of directors. Three candidates are runn...

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Special Sections

Plant-based diet offers benefits

Plant-based diet offers benefits


Photo by Ramya Krishna
Los Altos resident Nandini Krishna prepares a meat-free dish According to author Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D., a plant-based diet can help prevent cancer.

Shirley Okita of Los Altos has found that adhering to a mostly plant...

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Business

New shop offers haute couture for girls

New shop offers haute couture for girls


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Girls @ Los Altos at 239 State St. offers clothing lines such as Nellystella as well as toys and other items for girls.

Cecilia Chen opened The Girls @ Los Altos as a tribute to the party dress. Whether it’s for...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

BARBARA DARLING MERIDETH

1946-2014

Born in Palo Alto, raised in Los Altos, retired in southern Oregon. Survived by Peter James Merideth, sons Matthew, Jacob and John Merideth, the loves of her life.

She was a housewife who took great pride in her home, her surroundings and...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn



Los Altos Youth Theatre’s production of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a musical based on Washington Irving’s classic story, is set to run through Nov. 2 at Bus Barn Theater. The cast comprises 27 young actors, directed by Cindy Powell. Courtesy o...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Los Altos locks up boys tennis title; Spartans settle for third

Koehler

What a difference a move can make. A year after languishing in the SCVAL De Anza Division, the Los Altos High boys tennis team is thriving in the league’s El Camino Division and bound for the playoffs.

“I’m proud of this season and how hard (the players) worked,” coach Cuong Duong said.

And the schedule has worked in their favor. The Eagles, who finished at the bottom of the difficult De Anza a year ago, clinched the top spot in the easier El Camino last week. By whipping Wilcox 7-0 April 20, Los Altos improved to 11-1 and locked up a berth in next week’s Central Coast Section team playoffs.

It’s the first time the team has won a league title under Duong, whose Eagles competed in the De Anza his previous 14 seasons as coach.

“Coming into this year, I told them we should be the favorite to win the league – and we did,” he said. “I’m proud of how they responded to the pressure I put on them.”

Los Altos also won a pair of non-league matches (over Valley Christian and Pinewood), leaving Cupertino as the lone team to defeat them. After clipping the Pioneers 4-3 early on, the Eagles fell to them 5-2 April 8 when two of Los Altos’ singles players were on vacation.

“That was too bad, because we were looking to go undefeated,” Duong said.

In the regular season, that is. The coach knows the CCS playoffs will be treacherous.

“I don’t expect to go far in the playoffs,” Duong said. “I’d be happy to win a round or two.”

Winning the El Camino won’t be enough to place the Eagles among the seeded squads, leaving them to face a formidable foe early on. But the players are eager for the opportunity.

“They’re looking forward to playing better opponents and see how they match up,” Duong said.

Los Altos’ strength is its depth, according to the coach. Duong has two solid singles players – No. 1 Justin Koehler and No. 2 Charlie Bergevin – and “from No. 3 singles to No. 4 doubles, we’re pretty consistent,” he said.

Koehler has beaten every No. 1 player in the division but Cupertino’s Manpreet Tiwana. A third-year varsity player, Koehler played at the top spot last season as well.

“He has a better record this year because of the competition, and he’s gotten better in terms of being more consistent,” Duong said. “He hits with more top spin this year and has gotten stronger and his serve is bigger.”

No. 2 player Bergevin, a senior, has played varsity tennis since his freshman year. “He’s done quite well,” Duong said, winning all but one of his matches this season.

Two players new to varsity round out the singles lineup. Freshman Lenoy Avidan plays No. 3 and sophomore Sean Gospe is at No. 4. Both are baseline players with good ground strokes and quick feet, according to the coach. Avidan has won most of his matches, while Gospe has lost only once.

The top doubles team comprises Bryan Cassella and Matt Hoang, seniors who paired up last month.

“I came to realize they would make a good team and put them together after the fourth match of the season,” Duong said. “They lost their first match together and that’s it. They’re good together – they complement each other.”

The No. 2 tandem, seniors Darren Choi and Charlie Falconer, are also in their first season as a team. Choi and Falconer have won about half their matches, estimated Duong, who would like to see them be more consistent.

The No. 3 team, Nick Frangos and Alex Kellogg, played No. 1 doubles on junior varsity last year. The juniors won a challenge for the third spot a month ago and have lost only one match.

“They are playing so well for us,” Duong said.

Spartans finish third

While Los Altos has flourished in the El Camino, Mountain View is having “a fair season,” coach Frank Smyth said. The Spartans are 8-4 in the division, good enough for third place.

“It’s been better than average,” Smyth said of the campaign, “but we haven’t played to our full potential.”

Mountain View suffered a pair of 6-1 defeats to rival Los Altos after beating the Eagles in a non-league match last year. But the Spartans had ample experience in 2009. Behind nine seniors, Mountain View won the division and shocked St. Francis in the opening round of the CCS playoffs.

This year’s squad has not only endured growing pains, but aches and pains as well.

“We’ve had a lot of injuries,” said the team’s 10th-year coach.

Top singles player Eric Lee suffered an abdominal strain in the fourth match of the season, according to Smyth. The sophomore missed the next two weeks of the season and has been in and out of the lineup ever since because of the nagging injury. Smyth said Lee has “pretty sound strokes and a good forehand and backhand.”

No. 2 player Blake Thiessen, a junior, has been on varsity since his freshman year and is enjoying his most successful season.

“He’s playing the best and is the most fun to watch,” Smyth said. “He moves well and has a great one-handed backhand.”

Freshmen occupy the remaining singles slots. Conner Stearns plays No. 3 and Eddy Ahn is at No. 4. Stearns “has a pretty steady game,” Smyth said, while Ahn “has a good forehand.”

Seniors Jake Parker and Garrett Nano anchor the doubles ladder. Nano is in his fourth season on varsity and Parker his second.

“They’ve done pretty well,” Smyth said. “I thought they had a chance to dominate at No. 1 doubles, but there were some surprises along the way.”

Sophomore Daniel Lau is locked in at No. 2 doubles, but his partners change constantly.

“He’s having a good season, and I’m happy for him,” Smyth said of Lau, who teams with Peter Li, Michael Romeo or Danny Strom, all juniors. “He was cut as a freshman and sophomore but didn’t give up on tennis. He spent a lot of time practicing and taking lessons, and it paid off.”

Li, Romeo and Strom have seen action at No. 3 doubles as well, along with seniors John Sarhadi and Jeffery Tarrasch.

Parker-Nano sport the team’s best doubles record (above .500), and Smyth believes they have the best shot at representing Mountain View at the CCS Individual Tournament. Getting there requires winning the SCVAL El Camino Division Individual Tournament, scheduled to conclude 1-5 p.m. today at Mountain View.

Contact Pete Borello at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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