All it took was four tie-breaker victories and an easy win at the bottom of the doubles and singles ladder as the Palo Alto girls tennis team downed visiting Homestead 6-1 in a SCVAL De Anza Division contest Tuesday.
After what Paly's No. 1 singles player Erin Li went through to beat Homestead's Mani Patel, 6-4, 4-6, 16-14, it's a good thing the Vikings (4-1, 2-1) have the bye on Thursday. Li and her teammates could probably use the extra rest.
Iris Li lost her first set and then rallied for a 3-6, 7-6, 10-6 win at No. 2 singles.
The No. 1 doubles team of Harin Kim and Diane Rancic went down hard in the first set and rose up to win 1-6, 7-6, 11-9.
Kelly Tenaka and Erica Bussey won at No. 2 doubles, 6-3, 3-6, 11-9.
No. 4 singles Jessica Bae had a relatively easy time of it, winning her match 6-3, 6-3 and No. 3 doubles Malika Bowers and Elise Garcia also won in straight sets, 6-3, 6-4.
Palo Alto's next scheduled league match is at Cupertino next Tuesday.
Gunn also won at home, beating Fremont 6-1 in a SCVAL El Camino Division match. Aoi Kunimoto, Kailani Baker-Matsuoka, and Rhea Bhargava all won their singles matches.
The Titans are on the road at Santa Clara on Thursday.
Menlo beat St. Francis 6-1 in a nonleague match Tuesday. Andra Braciu, Brynn Brady and Natalie Westerman won singles matches for the Knights (5-0), who are heading to San Diego for the Point Loma Invitational on Friday.
Sophomore Emily Tan won at No. 1 singles for the Lancers (2-2), who head to Sacred Heart Cathedral for a match next Tuesday.
In the PAL Bay Division, Menlo-Atherton and Woodside each remained unbeaten in league play. Menlo-Atherton topped host Aragon 7-0 and Woodside went on the road to beat San Mateo 5-2.
Lila Motamedi and Emma Williams each won their singles matches without dropping a game for the Bears while Ava Martin and Tess Ellingson also won in straight sets.
Avantika Pai, Eva Urbanek and Camilla Jerng won their singles matches to set the stage for Woodside's victory.
Carlmont comes to Woodside and San Mateo goes to Menlo-Atherton in PAL matches Thursday.
Sequoia remained undefeated in the PAL Ocean Division with a 7-0 home win over Mills. Kyra Shechter and Zara Ahsan at No. 1 doubles, Josie Ollman and Asha Smith at No. 2 doubles and Madeline Carpinelli and Sophia Doyle at No. 3 doubles each won in straight sets to lead the win.
Capuchino comes to Sequoia for a 4 p.m. league match Thursday.
Sacred Heart Prep won its second match in as many days, beating Pinewood 5-2 in a nonleague match. Natalie Diaz, Sadie Goldstein and Leah Lynch each won singles matches while Charlotte de Baubigny and Sophie Frolik won at No. 3 doubles.
Girls water polo
The stage is set for an early season showdown when Los Gatos comes to Castilleja on Thursday at 4 p.m.
Both teams remained undefeated in the SCVAL De Anza Division. Los Gatos downed Harker 13-7 and Castilleja won on the road, beating Los Altos 14-6.
Annika Burks, Gabby Lewis and Sydney Lowell each scored three goals for the Gators (6-3, 5-0) and Sutchie Ofori-Nyako nabbed 10 saves.
Caitlyn Chau and Talua Seale each added two goals and Aria Kapoor also connected.
Gunn beat crosstown rival Palo Alto 11-4 to remain within two games of the frontrunners.
Kenza Ashworth led the Titans with five goals and three assists. Siham Arsalane added four goals. Mia Knezevic and goalie Jayden Kratt also scored goals.
Nina Albers recorded seven steals and an assist while Sawyer McKenna netted two assists, four steals and blocked a shot. Maddy Yeung also blocked a shot.
Julia Ragno scored three goals to pace Paly. Emily Neumann also scored. Gunn is at Homestead and Palo Alto hosts Harker on Thursday.
Boys water polo
Rowan Brougham, Cole Vale, Nadav Efrat, and Jordan Affeld each scored three goals and Gunn downed Palo Alto 15-9 in a SCVAL match.
Senior Hanna Hoffman recorded a team-high 12 kills and added 16 assists in helping Menlo win on the road Tuesday, 25-13, 25-9, 25-13 over Notre Dame-San Jose in a West Bay Athletic League match.
Simone Adam had eight aces, 10 kills and four blocks while fellow senior Zoe Gregory distributed 27 assists.
Junior Brooke Dombkowski added nine kills in helping the Knights (17-5) record a .348 hitting percentage.
Menlo hosts Harker on Friday.
Millie Muir recorded 11 kills and Sacred Heart Prep beat Mercy Burlingame at Serra San Mateo 25-14, 25-15, 25-20 in another WBAL match.
The Gators (13-1, 2-0) also received nine kills each from sophomores Isabelle Marco and Mia Radeff.
Marco and Muir combined for 44 assists and nine digs. Iris O'Connor added nine digs for the Gators, who host Notre Dame Belmont on Thursday.
In the PAL Bay Division, Menlo-Atherton beat host Aragon 25-16, 25-17, 25-19 to remain a game behind co-leaders Burlingame and Hillsdale.
M-A (9-9, 3-1) hosts Sequoia (0-5, 0-4) on Thursday.
Sequoia lost at home to Burlingame 25-13, 25-19, 25-19 and Hillsdale defeated Woodside 25-11, 25-9, 25-17.
St. Francis fell to host St. Ignatius in four sets in a West Catholic Athletic League match. The Lancers (8-8, 1-1) look to rebound against Valley Christian at home Thursday.
In the SCVAL De Anza Division, Palo Alto beat Gunn 25-19, 23-25, 25-11, 25-22 on Tuesday to remain unbeaten in league play.
The Vikings (11-5, 3-0) got key plays from Olivia Harrison and a key ace from Jess Watanabe to rally from a 20-16 deficit in the third set.
Grant Morgenfeld and Eoin O'Connell finished 2-3 and Palo Alto won the boys race in a SCVAL meet at Baylands Park with 50 points. Mountain View finished second with 70 points.
Spartans' Evan Markelz ran fourth in 16:50.1. Morgenfeld went 16:12.2 and O'Connell finished in 16:44.2.
Paly's five scoring runners each finished among the top 17.
Gunn placed seventh with Andrew Schoenen the top runner in 18th. Los Altos placed ninth.
Riley Capuano finished third (19:16.3) and Los Altos placed second behind Los Gatos, which had five runners among the top 16. Fiona Bodkin (19:49.5) and Maddy Randall (19:58.4) also finished in the top 10 for Los Altos.
Ella Fadil (20:22.2) and Emily Soobrian (20:24.5) were 13th and 14th for the Eagles.
Paly's Elizabeth Fetter was second overall in 18:25,5. Los Gatos' Shea Elmore won the race in 18:25.0. Paly's Hillary Studdert came in fifth in 19:27.5.
Gunn's top runners were Neha Rishi (20:38.4) in 15th and Amy White (20:41.3) in 17th.
Julia Gentin (20:02.9) and Eliana Montgomery (20:05.9) placed 11th and 12th for Mountain View.
St. Francis beat Palo Alto 3-0 in Mountain Views. The Lancers (5-0, 2-0) host Lynbrook in a league match Thursday.
Katie Spivakovsky shot a 40 and Nathalie Benrey came in with a 46 but Menlo-Atherton fell to San Mateo 265-269 at Sharon Heights Golf and Country Club.