LAHS freshman makes CCS semis; Lancers fall to LG in NorCal final

Experience won out in the singles semifinals of the Central Coast Section girls tennis championships, as Los Altos High freshman Yuu Ishikawa fell to junior Ashley Yeah of Los Gatos in straight sets.

Top-seeded Yeah – who went on to win the CCS title for the second straight year – defeated No. 4 Ishikawa 6-2, 6-1 Nov. 15 at Bay Club Courtside in Los Gatos.

“Yuu lost in the semifinals to probably one of the best players in NorCal, so there’s nothing to be ashamed of,” Eagles coach Hung Nguyen said. “She really played well, but Ashley’s age and experience made her the better player.”

Ishikawa advanced to the semis by winning a super tiebreaker over No. 5 Alisha Chulani of St. Francis the previous day. Ishikawa prevailed 6-2, 3-6, 1-0 (8) in the quarterfinal match. Earlier that day, she breezed to a 6-0, 6-1 win over unseeded Anna Hashimoto of Evergreen Valley.

“She had a good run,” Nguyen said of Ishikawa. “I’m proud of her.”

Two doubles teams from Los Altos competed in CCS last week, both eliminated in the first round.

Unseeded Kylie Akiyama and Krithika Nathamuni lost to St. Francis’ fifth-seeded duo Akanksha Pabari and Cate Liston 6-1, 6-2, while first alternates Celeste Tran and Cynthia Shah Chavez fell to Menlo-Atherton’s second-seeded Lanie Van Linge and Julia Marks 6-0, 6-1.

Lancers lose in finals

Five days after falling to Los Gatos 5-2 in the final of the CCS team championships, St. Francis faced the Wildcats again – this time for the Northern California crown. The rematch was closer, but Los Gatos came out on top again.

Los Gatos edged the Lancers 4-3 Saturday in the finals at Broadstone Racquet Club in Folsom.

St. Francis coach Lynn Horiye was surely happier with that effort than he was with his third-seeded team’s loss to the top-seeded Wildcats in the CCS final.

“I was very disappointed,” Horiye said after the Nov. 13 setback at Bay Club Courtside. “This is one of the best teams we’ve ever had, and I really thought we could win.”

The Lancers’ wins came from top doubles team Pabari and Liston, along with No. 2 duo Jessica Su and Olivia Huang.

Pabari and Liston participated in the CCS doubles championships the next day, advancing as far as the quarterfinals.

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