Tigers are playoff bound

By James Williams / Sports Editor

Hot Streak (Diego Alvarez / Staff Photographer)

By James Williams / Sports Editor

After originally clinching a share of the Orange Empire Conference Title, the Riverside City College Women’s Tennis team claimed sole possession of the title after defeating the Orange Coast College Pirates, 7-2, on April 3.

This is the second conference title for the women’s tennis team under coach Nikki Bonzoumet.

The first conference title under her tenure was in the 2000 season, in her first year as coach.

With the victory, the playoff bound Tigers keep an undefeated 10-0 record in conference play and are also 16-1 overall in the regular season.

The Tigers are on a 13 game winning streak, suffering their last loss to Palomar College, 5-4, on Feb. 10.

Bonzoumet said, RCC has been the team every other team in the conference has been trying to beat.

“Everyone in the conference has been gunning for us the second time around,” she said.

In the match against the Pirates, the Tigers won their first four singles matches.

Tigers’ No. 3 singles player Alejandra Borja defeated Pirates’ player Haley Moss, who had to retire due to injury.

In doubles play, the Tigers managed to win two of their three doubles games.

The Tigers’ No. 2 doubles team of Natalie Tomlin and Camille Requiestas lost a close match to the Pirates’ team of Nicole Pham and Krystal Hernandez.

Before clinching sole possession of the conference title, the Tigers’ defeated the Saddleback College Gauchos, 8-1, on March 29.

The Tigers had clinched at least a share of the Orange Empire Conference title after defeating the Gauchos.

After the Tigers’ No. 1 player Brooke Vorhees lost her match to Gauchos No. 1 player Jeannette Losaria 6-1, 6-3.

In response to losing the first match, the Tigers went on to win the next eight matches against the Gauchos.

 “We have had a great season thus far,” Bonzoumet said, after the win over Saddleback. “Right now, our goal is to win the conference outright and we can do that by defeating Orange Coast.”

“Orange Coast is a tough team and we do not take them lightly,” she said.

The Tigers had already held a victory over the Pirates from the first meeting between the two teams this season, 7-2, at home on March 13.

“When we played them the first time we played really well.  We know that we will have to play even better to beat them this time,” Bonzoumet said.

 “We will be prepared mentally and physically tomorrow as we travel on the road to take the title for our own,” Bonzoumet added before the game against the Pirates.

The Tigers will advance to the Southern California Regional Tournament with pairings to be announced on April 15.

 The team will also compete in the Orange Empire Conference tournament on April 19 at Fullerton College.