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Girls tennis preview: O.C. top 10 teams to start the season

STAFF WRITER

OCVarsity’s girls tennis preview for 2015:

1. University: The Trojans feature five new players in the starting lineup, but early results indicate the perennial power should continue to flourish. An 11-7 victory over a talented Santa Margarita bunch has University atop the polls again.

2. Corona del Mar: Coach Jamie Gresh inherits a talented lineup that will push University for supremacy in the Pacific Coast League. Sophomore Danielle Willson could prove to be the PCL’s top singles player by year’s end.

3. Santa Margarita: The Eagles return virtually everyone from a squad that advanced to the Division 1 quarterfinals in 2014. Behind nationally ranked players Kristina Breisacher and Katie Chang, Santa Margarita could be on its way to winning its 10th straight league title.

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GIRLS TENNIS PREVIEW

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4. Dana Hills: The Dolphins were co-champs with San Clemente in the South Coast League last season, and that race should again be neck-and-neck this fall. Freshman Courtney Swift will be one of the area’s top newcomers, already regarded as one of the top recruits for the class of 2019.

5. San Clemente: Last year’s co-league title was the Tritons’ first since 1978. With a talented core of returners – Lindsay Hung, Sami Neilson, Stephie Neilson and Natalie Nasongkhla – San Clemente could make it back-to-back titles for the first time in program history.

6. Northwood: The Timberwolves would be a favorite to win most leagues in Orange County, but they project as the third-best team in the daunting Pacific Coast League. Northwood will push University and Corona del Mar again this season, and should find its way back to the postseason.

7. Villa Park: The Spartans should make it back-to-back Crestview League titles. They return their entire doubles lineup in addition to Constance Branstine and talented sophomore Soly Colling.

8. JSerra: The Lions will again be Santa Margarita’s biggest threat in the Trinity League. Jadie Acidera and twins Mary and Zoe Kaffen give JSerra a formidable trio to build around.

9. Los Alamitos: First-year coach Hannah Holladay takes over the Griffins a year after the Sunset League power advanced to the Division 1 quarterfinals. Erika Cheng and sisters Hope and Hailey Hairrell make Los Al league favorites yet again this season.

10. Aliso Niguel: The Wolverines’ six losses in 2014 came in league and against top-10 ranked foes Dana Hills, San Clemente and Tesoro. With seven USTA players on its roster this season, look for Aliso to challenge for a CIF berth.

Contact the writer: kconnolly@ocregister.com


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