By David Pan Weekly Herald sports editor
The Edmonds-Woodway girls tennis team has the best of both worlds.
The Warriors’ singles lineup features a pair of up-and-coming freshmen along with two experienced seniors.
Freshman Myint-Zu Kzaw and Hanna Rhefeldt are the Warriors’ No. 1 and No. 2 singles players. The two easily won their matches in straight sets against Mariner in Edmonds-Woodway’s overall 7-0 victory March 23 at Edmonds-Woodway High School.
Earlier this season Kzaw lost in three sets to state placer Sally Park of Kamiak.
“She’s a real solid player,” Edmonds-Woodway coach Dan Crist said of Kzaw. “She’s got a good serve. She has a strong baseline. She’ll move forward when she needs to. She’s a tournament player. She has good experience, especially for a freshman.”
Rhedfelt also is a steady player and with seniors Jane Hong and Mikayla Valdez at No. 3 and No. 4 singles, the Warriors have a strong lineup. Hong played at No. 1 singles last season.
“We’ve got a real interesting blend,” Crist said of the singles lineup.
With Friday’s win over the Marauders, Edmonds-Woodway improved to 1-1 in the Western Conference 4A South Division and 3-1 overall. The lone loss was 4-3 to Kamiak.
The Knights won all the singles matches, while the Warriors took the doubles.
Seniors Liz Wilson and Makenzie O’Brien are at No. 1 doubles. The two teamed up last season.
Juniors Emily Storino and Kalia Machado, the Warriors’ No. 2 doubles, also played some doubles last season, though Storino also saw time in singles.
“I think their potential is as a doubles team,” Crist said. “They are two real strong athletes.”
Here is a look at Meadowdale and Mountlake Terrace.
On paper, the Mavericks would appear to be a veteran team with a number of juniors and seniors on the squad.
The reality is that this is the first extensive playing time for many team members at the varsity level.
“We’ve only got a couple of the girls who played in some of the doubles matches last year,” said first-year head coach Tim Rettmann. “Other than that, this is their first year playing varsity. They’re very coachable players. Every single time we’ve played, we’ve played better.”
The Mavericks dropped to 2-3 in the Western Conference 3A and overall following a 4-3 loss to district rival Mountlake Terrace March 23 at Meadowdale High School.
“My girls played hard,” Rettmann said. “Mountlake Terrace played well. The main difference in the match is they moved the ball around more.”
Senior Isabel Reeb is at No. 1 singles.
“She’s definitely the most solid player on the team,” Rettmann said. “She has the most well-rounded game and the most solid tennis fundamentals.”
No. 2 singles player junior Jiwon Han perhaps has shown the most improvement so far in the five matches.
“She’s really becoming a solid player,” Rettmann said. “She may not be getting the wins but she’s very close. If she sticks with it, the wins are going to come.”
Junior Sage Haynes is at No. 3 singles. What Rettmann likes about Haynes’ game is her aggressiveness. She hits the ball hard every time, Rettmann said.
“I’m working on getting the rest of the team to do that,” he added. “The key to (Haynes’) success is she just plays so aggressively all the time.”
Seniors Jennifer Bishop and Andrea Kane are at No. 1 doubles with senior Maddy Shields/senior Michelle Cho and senior Sarah Hamburg/junior Eva Daniggelis at No. 2 and No. 3 doubles.
Rettmann replaced former coach Mark Schneider, who relocated for a new job. Rettmann coached boys teams at Pasco and North Central high schools in Spokane and also the men’s team at Eastern Washington and Whitworth.
This is his first experience coaching a female team, though he has worked at numerous co-ed camps.
“It’s the most fun I’ve had with a team,” Rettmann said. “Academically they are a really high achieving group.”
The talent level for the Hawks is as high as it’s ever been for fifth-year head coach Alberto Ramirez.
So it comes as no surprise that with Mountlake Terrace’s 4-3 victory over Meadowdale March 23 the Hawks improved to 2-2 in the league and 4-3 overall.
Freshman Nicole Bouche improved her No. 1 singles record to 4-1 with a 6-3, 6-0 victory over Meaowdale’s Isabel Reeb.
“She’s a very solid club player. She has tournament experience,” Ramirez said of Bouche, whose older siblings Rhett and Teryn both played tennis at Mountlake Terrace High School. “She’s going to be pretty tough if she stays healthy.
“She’s very mature for her age, gamewise and personalitywise.”
Senior Gillian Braden, who was No. 1 singles last season, is at No. 2 singles. Also playing singles are senior Stefanie Roesli and freshman Kaykee Cooper, who may also see action in doubles.
Senior Andrea Giuffrida and junior McKayla Floe are the Hawks’ top doubles team. The rest of the lineup could still change.
“We have a big group of girls,” Ramirez said. “They haven’t settled on their positions yet.”
Ramirez is hoping that Mountlake Terrace ends up somewhere in the middle of the pack in the Wesco 3A.
“It looks very promising,” he said.
The talent level is fairly spread out from seniors through freshmen.
“I’m very pleased. We have a great group of girls,” Ramirez said. “They are all having fun. I think we’re going to improve quite a bit in the next two years.”