Dolphins’ Doubles Depth on Display in Season-Opening Victory at Rancho Park
By STEVE GALLUZZO | Sports Editor
Never underestimate the heart of a champion. Last season, Gigi Feingold and Caroline Ross teamed up to win the City Individual doubles title and last Thursday afternoon they were locked in a tense struggle in the first rotation of the Palisades High girls tennis team’s season opener against host Marymount at Rancho Park.
Just as they had in the third set against teammates Maddy Goore and Alex Hart in the City finals 10 months earlier, Feingold and Ross raised their level of play when it mattered most, prevailing 7-3 in a tiebreaker against the Sailors’ No. 1 duo to pave the way for the Dolphins’ 15 1/2 to 2 1/2 victory.
Feingold and Ross then won their second set 6-0 before being subbed out for ninth graders Kalea Martin and Claudia Goore, who were tied 4-4 when the match was stopped due to time constraints.
Palisades won all eight of the doubles sets completed in the round robin format. Freshmen Noe Winter and Halsey Hulse, who played together at Paul Revere Middle School, took two sets 6-0, 6-0 at the No. 2 position, then Hulse paired with Alex Hart to win her third set, 6-4.
Maddy Goore and Alex Miller swept 6-0, 6-1, 6-0 at the No. 3 doubles spot.
In singles, twins Ireland and Sophia Amato swept at No. 1 and No. 2, neither surrendering more than one game in any set. Three players rotated at the No. 3 spot. Sophia Arvin and Taylor Barfield lost their sets but Sarah Slavkin won hers in the last round to pad the final score.
“I’m pleased because we only beat them 4-2 at our place last year,” Pali High Coach Bud Kling said. “This shows we have more depth than last year, particularly in doubles and all but one person who came got to play. Our lineup isn’t set in stone so everyone has to earn playing time in practice.”
Palisades traveled to Santa Monica yesterday for another intersectional showdown and 22 players head north today for this weekend’s California Classic in Fresno, where the Dolphins went 4-1 to take first place in Level B of Division 3 last year. League play opens Monday at Hamilton.