The strong finish

On Oct. 22, Lauren Martinez, 11, plays against Paramount during their last tennis game of the season at the Downey courts. Martinez ranked second in singles tournament.

Edward Valencia, Writer/Parents and Teachers Editor

The girls varsity tennis team played their final match at home on Tuesday, Oct. 22 against Paramount, where they finished the season with a record of 10-2

In the singles matches, senior Erin Freeman and sophomores Lauren Martinez and Tara Kazimi won 7 out of 9 games in total. The Pirates rallied late, with the Lady Vikes winning 4 out of 9 doubles games, but held on to win 11-7.

The girls wrapped up a successful season, finishing 9-3 in the league. The season fused new teammates with last year’s league title champions. Coach Diego felt proud of the players.

“We won last year,” Diego said. “And we have a lot of the returning players from last year’s team, so it’s a great team.”

Senior Dimitra Loumiotis is a returning player who has played on the team for four years, she feels somber about finishing her final season playing tennis.

“It was fun, but it’s kind of sad,” Loumiotis said. “It’s bittersweet, I’m gonna miss it.”

One of the highlights, or heartbreaks, of the season was when the girls played against Warren. The game was evenly matched and went back and forth. The game ended in a tie, and a tiebreaker had to be played where Warren won by one match and defeated the Lady Vikes.

“They were so evenly matched,” Diego said. “Our first game we lost, the second game we won, the third game was a tie, and then we lost by one game. It was awful.”

Senior Dimitra Loumiotis is a returning player who has played on the team for four years, she feels somber about finishing her final season playing tennis.

This season, the league champions were joined by players from another sport: soccer. A few members from the girls soccer team joined the tennis team.

Lucy Martinez, a soccer player who decided to try out for the team, was welcomed by the other tennis players, even though she felt out of place trying out for a sport she had no experience in.

“I didn’t know what to do,” Martinez said. “I felt awkward and weird because I’ve never played that sport; it was a different experience for me but the girls welcomed us nicely and we made new friends. And Coach Diego is the best.”

The girls finished the season with a record of 10-2. After the regular season, a few players went on to the League Finals. Senior Erin Freeman, who went undefeated in singles, placed first in the San Gabriel Valley League. The doubles team of sophomores Tara Kazimi and Lauren Martinez placed second overall, while the doubles team of juniors Elizabeth Aceves and Jessica Angell placed 1st overall.

In the League Finals, only the top two teams received medals, so the Lady Vikes capped off a successful season with both doubles teams placing in the top two spots and the only singles player from Downey High placing first overall.