Rancho Cotate's Wong brothers will lead local contingent to NCS championships
The top prep tennis players in Sonoma County will be in Alamo on Friday for the North Coast Section Division 1 Championship.
To get to NCS, the players had to win their league tournaments.
Representing the NBL in singles will be Montgomery’s Justin Richter and the Rancho Cotate doubles duo of Alec and Joshua Wong.
Advancing from the SCL are Healdsburg’s Trevor Cook and Sonoma Valley’s doubles team of Ben Regoli and Miles Pimentel.
The Wong brothers were the last to qualify. On Saturday at Santa Rosa High, they captured the NBL doubles tournament.
Playing as the top seed in the final, the Wongs defeated Maria Carrillo’s Jim Klyce and Dat Tran in three sets (3-6, 6-3, 6-2).
The Wong brothers played singles during the regular season and both went undefeated. However, they decided to team up in doubles for the postseason.
At the beginning of the final, it didn’t look like a wise decision as they lost the first set.
“I was really nervous at the start,” freshman Joshua said.
Alec, who is a senior, also admitted to butterflies.
The turning point of the match came midway through the second set with the teams on serve. At 3-2 and game point, Alec hit a forehand winner to go up a break.
“We skyrocketed from there,” Alec said. “We settled down and began playing with confidence.”
The Wongs finished out the second and then scored a clear-cut victory in the third set.
On most points, Joshua played at the net where he was able to volley while Alec stationed himself at the baseline where he could unleash the forehand and backhand that has made him such a good singles player.
Cook, the SCL singles champ, had to go three sets in both Friday’s semifinal and championship in order to secure his invitation to NCS.
He eliminated Zach Leno 6-7, 7-6 and 6-1 and then advanced by defeating Nathan Wong 6-3, 4-6 and 7-5. Leno and Wong represented Petaluma.
Each of those matches lasted 21/2 hours.
“Trevor showed a lot of heart,” his coach Natalia Agarycheva said. “It was such a long day and he responded by playing so well.”
Cook spent the weekend recovering.
“I haven’t felt well and I think it’s just exhaustion from those matches on Friday,” he said. “I was definitely tired late in the final match and had to find something extra.
“Thankfully, I was able to keep my cool and come away the win.”
While the players from the larger schools will be in Alamo this Friday and Saturday, athletes from smaller schools will be at Santa Rosa High where the NCS Division 2 Tournament will be.
The NCS team championships will begin May 10.