Eleven and Counting

Pali High Tennis Tops Granada Hills for City Open Division Title

By STEVE GALLUZZO | Sports Editor

Bud Kling has 46 City titles to his credit, but the Palisades High tennis coach cannot recall the last time everyone on the rosplayed in a championship  match.

That was the case last Tuesday at Balboa Sports Center in Encino, where the No. 1-seeded Dolphins breezed to their 11th straight boys crown with a 23-6.5 triumph over No. 2 Granada Hills in the Open Division final.

Kling, who took over the boys program in 1979 and the girls’ in 1984 has led the boys to 27 titles,  the girls to 19 and is only a handful of wins away from setting the state record for career victories.

Henry Lovett serves an ace in the final versus Granada Hills. He won three sets at No. 1 singles, 6-1, 6-0, 6-0.

“Obviously, winning 11 consecutive championships is really staggering to the imagination, but the fact that the varsity substitutes and all of the JV, everyone who was eligible, got a chance to play, which had never happened before, makes this one special for me.”

Since the City sanctioned the  sport in 1937, Palisades has netted 37 boys titles and the longest streak before the current mark was five in a row, shared by Palisades and El Camino Real. As dominant as the Dolphins looked this spring, there is no telling how long their latest dynasty will last.

Tulane-bound senior Henry Lovett dropped only one game in three sets at No. 1 singles before being subbed out for freshman Peter Sims, who won his set 6-2.

Atticus Parker lines up a forehand return in last Tuesday’s City Open Division final at Balboa Sports Center.

Junior Lincoln Bellamy won 6-0, 6-0, 6-0 before being subbed out for Aidan Federoff, who fell to the Highlanders’ No. 1 player 6-2.

Senior Danilo Milic won 6-1, 6-0, 6-0, before being replaced by junior Matt Webber, who won 6-0.

At the No. 4 spot, sophomore Atticus Parker won 6-3, 6-0, 6-0, then junior Alex Brous lost to the Highlanders’ top player, 7-5.

In doubles, Souma Hayakawa and Nick Arvin were subbed out after two sets (each worth one and a half points) and junior Jeremy Nelson paired with freshman Gabe Groenweld to win, 6-2. Freshmen Michael Kaplan and Noah Zaret swept 6-2, 6-0, 6-0 at the No. 2 spot and junior Adam Glickman and freshman Luke Shuman won 6-2, 6-0 before giving way to Damian Dobrowolski and Ben Kim.