No. 7 Canyon claims title with undefeated run


PLACENTIA - Last season, with the Century League title up for grabs, Canyon dropped a final-set tiebreaker in the third round of their season finale against El Dorado to finish second by less than a handful of games in a 9-all tie.

On Wednesday afternoon, the Comanches swiftly eliminated any possibility of another narrow outcome.

No. 7 Canyon (18-0, 12-0) claimed all but one set in the first round, then took four of six in the second before cruising to a 12-6 victory over the host Golden Hawks to finish the regular season undefeated for the first time since 1994.

“We’ve had some very good teams, individually-wise, but nothing like this,” Comanches coach Wil Wilkins said. “The depth of this team is amazing. ... We have a legitimate chance to go far in the playoffs.”

Canyon’s No. 1 singles player and reigning Century League Singles Player of the Year, Amanda Zuidema, gave the visitors three of their four singles sets with a 6-2, 6-1, 6-0 sweep.

“Amanda is a special kid,” Wilkins said. “She has the ability to play with the best kids in the league, and CIF for that matter. She works harder outside of practice than anyone I’ve ever seen. ... She always wants to get better.”

Until a third-round tiebreaker went to No. 10 El Dorado (15-5, 9-2), the Comanches’ doubles lineup was 8-for-8 in sets and, more importantly, 2-for-2 in tiebreakers -- one in each of the first two rounds.

The all-junior No. 3 team of Tyler Garant and Lauren Candia swept its sets, 7-6, 6-2, 6-0, and Helena Bui and Nicole Huizinga claimed their two, 6-3, 6-0.

“Our girls all went out and did their jobs,” Wilkins said. “They’re always confident when they’re playing; they don’t need me to go out there and pump them up. They get pumped up and excited altogether. ...  I couldn’t be more proud of them.”

For the Golden Hawks, Gabrielle Etchegaray (6-0, 6-1) and Bridget Etchegaray (6-0, 6-0) claimed two singles sets apiece.

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