ROUNDUP: Gaels drop Durango to reach Sunset title match

Anita Lee needed only 26 minutes to win two sets Wednesday.

Sarah Bessen took only four minutes longer.

It was a routine, albeit short, day for Bishop Gorman’s girls tennis team.

Lee, Bessen and Sarah Toti each won a pair of 6-0 sets to lead the Gaels to a 13-5 win over Durango in a Sunset Region semifinal at Darling Tennis Center.

“Maybe once or twice all year we’ve come out a little flat,” said Lee, who lost only 10 points in her 12 games. “We didn’t want that to happen today. We constantly help each other out. We try to make each other better in practice.”

Bessen didn’t lose a point in her first set, which lasted only 12 minutes.

“We know we still have to play well every match to win,” said Gorman coach Gordon Hammond, whose team improved to 14-0 overall and will face Palo Verde (13-0) for the Sunset title at 6 p.m. on Friday at Darling Tennis Center.

“Every team has somebody who beats us. The good thing is we have a lot of girls who play a lot and we’re able to get a lot of kids into the matches.”

Blair Bigelow and Allie Beckett went 2-0 in doubles for Gorman.

Lee, Bessen and Toti didn’t play in the third round. Their substitutes — Cheryl Ernst, Lexi Sorentino and Julia King — finished off a singles sweep.

Sisters Claire and Andrea Melo, and the team of Jamie Dean and Kaitlyn Moore were 2-1 in doubles for Durango, which played in its first Sunset semifinal.

Durango switched its lineup Wednesday, putting its top players in doubles.

“We had to try something,” Trailblazers coach Pat Davis said. “The kids played hard and with a lot of heart.”

Durango’s roster of 11 players includes no seniors. The Trailblazers used a starting nine of three juniors, four sophomores and two freshmen.

“That’s what the kids are talking about,” Davis said. “Going into next year, that’ll be something we try to really build on.”

Palo Verde 15, Bonanza 3 — At Palo Verde, Alissa Rea and Gabbi Imai went 3-0 in doubles to help the Panthers beat the Bengals.
Nikki Booth and Shelby Zepeda went 2-0 in doubles for Palo Verde.

Sarah Alamshaw went 2-0 in singles for the Panthers.


Silverado 10, Coronado 8 — At Coronado, Silverado (11-1) swept the singles matches, including two tiebreaker wins by Ashley Newell, to upset the Southeast League champions.

Newell, Kristen Santero and Nicole Santero each went 3-0 in singles for the Skyhawks.

The doubles teams of Jordan Luna and Jonelle Espinoza, and Ilysa Popowcer and Liz Gibbons each went 3-0 for Coronado.

Silverado will face Green Valley (9-3) for the Sunrise title Friday at 6 p.m. at Darling Tennis Center.

Green Valley 11, Basic 7 — At Green Valley, Jessica Hsu went 3-0 in singles to lead the Gators past the Wolves.

Sarah Trigero and Kelsey Barto went 2-1 in doubles for  Green Valley.

Basic’s Alyssa Giorgi went 2-1 in singles.

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