Most Viewed Stories
Troy's Hernandez wins third Freeway title
LA HABRA - A week removed from "one of the toughest losses I've ever had," Troy's Caryl Hernandez regrouped and finished his tear through the Freeway League finals with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Fullerton's Will Walker to win the singles championship Friday at the La Habra Tennis Center.
"It's good to go out on this note," Hernandez said of his third consecutive singles crown. "I know the way a lot of guys look at me and I never take anyone easily. I don't pay attention to who's on the other side of the court. I just play the ball, play my best and hope I do well."
In the doubles bracket, Troy's Chetan Munugala and Andy Nguyen outlasted Sunny Hills' Simon Park and Kwang Lee in a remarkable four-hour, three-set victory, 7-6, 5-7, 7-5.
"Not only in athletics, but in all my life, this is the greatest moment I've ever had," Nguyen said. "I couldn't ask for a better feeling."
In a match that produced four faces heavy with exhaustion, relief, anguish and elation at its conclusion, it was truly a shame that two competitors had to walk away with silver medals.
"It was the perfect balance of competition, pressure and respect," Lee said. "It was a fun environment and having all my friends watching was great."
With the team CIF tournament slated to begin on Wednesday, Freeway League champion Troy will look to erase the memories of last year's first-round exit.
"In a tournament like that I don't think about myself," Hernandez said. "I play for my teammates and what we've been working for all season."
Hernandez used the Freeway League Finals to get over a disappointing loss last week in the quarterfinals of the Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament.
During an elimination tiebreaker with Chadwick's Max Hawkins, Hernandez missed on an overhead shot with the match on the line and wound up being knocked out of the tournament.
"It was a shot I shouldn't have missed," the senior said. "It was hard to take at first, but it happens. It's a game and it was something to learn from."
"I don't think I lost anything. I feel like I gained experience."