HANAPEPE — It’s still early in the KIF tennis season, but the biggest match of the year, pitting two unbeatens — Kapa’a’s Lyndsey Tom and Kula’s Ariel Carlson is now in the works thanks to victories by the two phenoms, yesterday in Hanapepe and Po’ipu.
Carlson outlasted a strong effort by Waimea’s Sonya Tacub in a three set marathon, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.
The match lasted over two hours, with both seniors trading ground strokes and power serves.
Meanwhile, Tom, only a freshman is licking her chops to face the only other unbeaten KIF girls singles player in Carlson.
Tom, who hasn’t lost a point this season, blasted Kaua’i sophomore Cassady Sirois, 6-0, 6-0.
But in her own estimation, she contends that she’s yet to play a “solid” match.
“I didn’t play that well,” Tom said to her father and coach (Jon Tom) after the match.
Tom and Carlson will meet up on Saturday at the Hanalei Bay Resort Courts at 12 noon.
In yesterday’s matches, Kula’s boys squad edged Waimea, 3-2, behind wins from Kyle Barrett (defeated Jake Anderson, 6-0, 6-1), Alex Latif/Kai Anderson (defeated Kale Nakata/Jordan Sato, 6-2, 6-2), and Kibo Smith/Matt Vinsko.
Waimea’s girls team took down Kula, 4-1, thanks to triumphs by Kelsi Naumu (defeated Nora Robertson, 6-0, 6-1), Jenny Rumbaoa/Banana Kajiwara (beat Danielle Hoen/Danielle Jure, 3-6, 7-6, 6-2), Lovely Abalos/LeeAnn Sagucio (defeated Bailey Bierlein/Anna Novoselova, 7-5, 6-2), and Sheila Ramos/Cece Sun (beat Diane Sater/Ellie Sherrer, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5.
Carlson accounted for the lone Kula girls win, but the Dolphin ladies put up a good fight.
“We just need to communicate better and play together. I feel that we’ve improved, but we still have a ways to go,” Kula freshman Bierlein said.
In the meantime, Kapa’a and Kaua’i split their matches in Po’ipu, with the Red Raider girls winning again and the Warrior boys breaking through with a victory.
“We played well today and we’ll be fine the rest of the way,” coach Tom said.
Kapa’a’s boys nailed down three of the five matches, with Danny Rodrick leading the way. The junior upended Kaua’i’s J.L. Vento, 7-5, 6-4.
Other Warrior successes included Taylor Alfiler (beat Sterling Inouye, 7-5, 7-6) and Matt Hanley/Kila Youn (defeated Jeremy Ferguson/Chris Barich, 6-4, 7-5).
Chris Webster/Alan Castillo (beat Adam Kerlin/Brent Sokei, 6-3, 6-3) and Reyn Balocan/Sheadon Ringor (defeated Travis Wakayama/Chris Ramelb, 6-3, 6-2) were victorious for the Red Raiders.
Kaua’i’s girls stopped a strong Kapa’a bid, 3-2, behind wins from Lizzy Schiller/Lezlie Tao (defeated Kelli Okamoto/Steph Kawamura, 6-4, 5-7, 6-3), Tati Zina/Megan Vento (beat Mailika “Squatch” Napoleon/Courtney Kerlin, 6-3, 7-5, 6-3), and Jacey Ageno/Katie Anderson (defeated Cherine Ito/Lauren Ito, 6-3, 6-3).
The Warriors ruled in singles with Tom’s triumph and Crystine “Judge” Ito’s win over Dasha Lagmay, 7-5, 7-6.
On Saturday, Island battles Kaua’i at Kiahuna and Kula challenges Kapa’a in Hanalei. Both matches begin at 12 noon.
- Duane Shimogawa Jr., sports editor, may be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 257) or email@example.com.