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Sophia Kalugin

Senior Zach Passmore returns a shot to his opponent during his first singles game vs Coalinga HS, Feb. 28.

Eagles capture first victory

The Eagles played their first game of the season against Coalinga High School in a league matchup, Feb. 28. The Eagles defeated the Horned Toads, 8-1, and are now 1-0 in league.

With limited practices and the first game for the Eagles being a league game, they knew they had to come out strong and take a win. FC was still missing players due to basketball continuing through playoffs but still had enough players for a full ladder plus some.

The Eagles began with their first four singles. Zach Passmore, ‘17, Jaden Ventura, ‘18, Jarrod Markarian, ‘17, and Julian Castro, ‘17, led the way getting three wins all except in first singles. Fifth singles player senior Nevan Gonzalez defeated his opponent and sixth singles player sophomore Alex Rurik won his game, 8-0.

After the singles games, the Eagles had already won the match vs Coalinga but still fought to win as many games as possible. Hunter Nale, ‘20, and John Monke, ‘19, of the third doubles team added another win to FC’s score by defeating their opponents, 8-0. Second doubles players Ventura and sophomore Reese Brown also won their game, pushing the Eagles lead to, 7-1.

The final game of the match was the first doubles game. Markarian and Castro having had two previous years of experience playing together, were unfazed by the little practice time. The seniors were ready to cap off the match with another win for the Eagles.

The game started out well for FC as they jumped to a 2-0 lead in a match to 8. However, Coalinga did not lay off and began to fight their way back. Both teams began to split games until the score was 7-6 in favor of the Eagles. Coach Daniel Jessing spoke with his players and talked strategy to avoid the tie-breaker and take the win in the next game. Castro and Markarian were ready to finish the match.

With Castro as the server, the final game began. Both teams fought for the lead but eventually the Eagles found it at 40-30. After the next serve and the ball being returned to Castro, he hit a forehand that struck the net and barely went over and scored the final point to give the Eagles the game, 8-6, and the match, 8-1.

With this win over Coalinga, the Eagles improve their league record to 1-0. The next appearance for the Eagles will be in the California Tennis Classic tournament, March 3-4.

Markarian is happy with the team’s win in their first appearance and believes this sets them up well for the season.

“I’m proud of our whole team for getting the win,” Markarian said. “We played well despite not having a lot of practice. This was a great game to see how well we will do in the future and I believe that we are going to have a great season.”

For more info about the upcoming tournament for the Eagles, check out: Boys tennis prepares for annual tournament

This author can be reached via twitter: @Julian_Castro09 and via email

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