Although it has been two years since the CIF Southern Section girls’ tennis playoffs have been conducted, Burbank High’s team, fortunately, has some players who understand the routine.
Now down in Division 3, the Bulldogs passed their first playoff test, beating visiting Walnut 11-7.
Burbank had been in Division 2 in 2018 and 2019, being eliminated both times by South Torrance.
“This is a really good victory for us. My first two years we were in Division 2, so the playoffs were very difficult. We’re excited we dropped down to Division 3. We’re excited to see how far we can get,” senior and four-year varsity player Elli Sumera said.
Burbank will go on the road in the second round Friday, playing against either Temple City or La Salle of Pasadena. Both teams won the coin flip over the Bulldogs to play host to the match.
“I think we have a really strong team this year and our bond is really great this year. This year we’ve gotten a lot closer and we’re able to have practice every day,” Sumera added. “It has been a great change from last year’s season. We’re just happy to still be playing and want to last as long as we can.”
Burbank (13-3) won five of nine sets in singles and took six of nine sets in doubles.
Burbank No. 1 singles player Victoria Kalantar lost 6-3 to Walnut No. 1 Kassandra Uy, defeated Walnut No. 2 Felicia Ang 6-0, and lost 6-4 to Walnut No. 3 player Kylie Pong.
Burbank No. 2 player Cleo Wang swept her sets going 6-3, 6-1, 6-1.
Bulldogs No. 3 player Sena Hammel won two of three, going 0-6, 6-1, 6-2.
In doubles, Burbank’s No. 1 team of Sumera and Nairi Zeytounzian went 2-6 against Walnut’s No. 1 team of Katherine Sutandar and Renee Chang. The Burbank pair defeated the No. 2 team of sisters Annabel and Abigail D’Souza, 6-0. Sumera and Zeytounzian defeated the Walnut No. 3 team of Audrey Qi and Rachel Kao, 6-0.
Burbank’s No. 2 doubles team of Meeneh Mirzaians and Brianna Khobramasihi won two of three sets, going 3-6, 6-3, 6-0.
The Burbank No. 3 doubles team of Lilyan Hawrylo and Arpi Krikorian lost 7-6(9-7) to Sutandar and Chang. They won their two other sets, both with scores of 6-1.
Walnut finishes its season with a 12-10 record.