Five members of Cabrillo’s boys tennis team were originally scheduled to travel with the Conquistador marching band this Friday for a special performance at Disneyland.
But instead, those players and the rest of the Conqs headed to Santa Barbara, after Cabrillo eliminated North Hollywood Oakwood 12-6 in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division 4 playoffs, advancing to the second round of the tennis postseason.
Josh Roehrig was one of those players headed to Santa Barbara's Laguna Blanca School, as he and his doubles partner Brad Bleak swept all three of their opponents on the CHS tennis court.
“We’re totally skipping out on Disneyland. I love not having to go,” Roehrig said on Wednesday. “This is just such a great team and it would hurt me to not be around them. It’s like saying ‘Oh, I won’t go to the Super Bowl because there was this really cool party for the Super Bowl.’ I would rather go to the Super Bowl instead (with my team). It’s like that and these are a great group of guys I love spending time with.”
The Conqs lost that playoff match at Laguna Blanca as their season ended on the road with a 14-4 loss to the Owls in the second round of the Division 4 playoffs.
The Conqs won all four of their points in singles as Josh Ogan and Chris Siefe each won two sets. Ogan won 6-2 and 6-3 while Siefe won 6-4 and 6-0.
On Wednesday, Roehrig and Bleak had to rely on their vertical jumps to counter the Gorillas out of the Liberty League, who won three matches each in both the doubles and singles realm. The leaps came in handy for both Conqs, as it provided their best countermoves against the Los Angeles area tennis team.
“I think that’s our playing style, too — there’s a lot of movement,” Roehrig said.
Added Bleak: “It was a lot of jumping. We had to run around a lot. We played really good and they’re a really good team. We just played our game.”
The duo was the lone team that won all three of their games, winning by scores of 6-4, 6-0 and 6-2. The No. 1 CHS duo of Alex Fernandez and Christian Barrick took two of three sets by scores of 7-5 and 6-2. Cabrillo’s No. 2 doubles team of Marco Monroy and Jacob Maglinte won their last match by the score of 7-6.
The first postseason contest started with a competitive back-and-forth between the top singles players on both teams Cedric Kwon (Cabrillo) and Jonathan Taub (Oakwood) under a cloudy sky in Vandenberg Village. While both players saw the ball hit the net a combined 12 times, it was Taub of the Gorillas who took the 6-1 victory — as Taub showed the most velocity on his serves and counters.
“I got my serves in and played really aggressively. Today, my eyeballs were working well and I ended up with a good result,” Taub said.
He added that he wasn’t familiar with Kwon and his strengths since he’s a player who is outside of the L.A. area. But Taub acknowledged that Kwon was a formidable opponent.
“I don’t know too many players out here, but he’s a really consistent player with a big serve,” Taub said. “Plus he’s really tall, so he had a really good presence at the net. I just worked really hard to keep him at the baseline because if he had the net, then he would’ve been at an advantage with his height. But he was a really good player.”
Kwon tipped his hat to Taub after the hard-fought singles game.
“I can say he’s a pretty good player. He’s got decent hands and a big serve,” Kwon said. “He’s a consistent player. Some of his forehand shots that came at an angle were a little bit surprising for me. I think I lost my focus and missed out on a lot of shots there. I’m aiming to get my mindset back on and focusing on my next two matches since I can’t change the past.”
The top tennis option for CHS did just that, as Kwon shook off the first game rust and won his next two contests by scores of 6-4 and 6-2, the latter giving CHS its 10th and set clinching victory.
Ogan, who is headed to Hancock College in the fall, and Siefe also collected victories in singles action, as both players won two of three matches. Ogan swung his way to back-to-back 6-0 wins while Siefe, who plans to attend UC Davis in August, also won his last two matches by 6-0 decisions.