Empire tennis hopefuls ousted in NCS tournament



Analy’s Jade Wight and Maria Carrillo’s duo of Fu Long and Tiffany Liang won opening round matches at Tuesday’s North Coast Section tournament before losing in the quarterfinals later in the day.

Playing on the courts at Chabot College in Hayward, sophomore Wight took out Amador Valley’s Vera Smekalina by scores of 6-4, 6-1 while Long and Liang prevailed over Analy’s Ayla Bohr and Kate Stewart, 6-1, 6-0.

Wight was then eliminated by Dougherty Valley’s Christina Wang, 6-0, 6-2.

The Long-Liang team had a much closer quarterfinal match. The Carrillo girls lost to Miramonte’s duo of Holly Bohuslav-Merrick Goodman 6-4, 3-6 and 7-5.

The only other Sonoma County player in the Division 1 tournament was North Bay League singles champ Maraghi Andreassi. The Montgomery freshman lost in the first round to No. 4 seed Taylor James of Miramonte 6-2, 7-5.

The lone Redwood Empire player in Division 2 was Sophia Sakopoulos from St. Helena. She was defeated in the opening round by Lick Wilmerding’s Catherine Peabody 6-2, 6-2. That match was played at San Rafael High.

Wight, who qualified for NCS by winning the Sonoma County League singles tournament, won her opening round Tuesday by playing steadier tennis than her opponent.

“Her strategy was to make the points short,” Wight said. “So, I just stayed focused and tried to get one more ball back.

“By the second set, she looked like she was frustrated and I just kept trying to hit keep the ball in play.”

Wight was overpowered in the quarterfinals.

“My opponent slammed everything back,” she said. “She had good placement on all her shots.”

Montgomery’s Andreassi was experiencing the NCS tournament for the first time. Her opponent is a senior.

“The first set went by fast,” Andreassi said. “I was trying to get focused.

“The second set I was more aggressive and that worked. We had some long points.”

With the score 5-5, Andreassi lost her serve and James then finished out the match.

Carrillo’s Long, who represented the NBL in NCS the previous two years, won the league’s doubles tournament along with Liang this season.

In the quarters, Long and Liang were one game away from winning the match.

“We had them down 5-2 in the third set but then fell apart on some points,” Long said. “We played really well up to then.”