Eemaun Latifi picked up wins in both singles and doubles play in leading Saddleback to its third straight win. (Evelyn Caicedo)
Saddleback men’s tennis lost a closely contested match 5-4 to Orange Coast College last Thursday. The match came down to doubles action after the score was tied 3-3 once the singles matches were decided.
In the decisive doubles matches, OCC’s combination of Felix Demiro and Pat Write, Jesse Chen and Gregory Villicana provided the necessary victories to put the Pirates over the top to secure the victory.
Before the match, Saddleback coach Bud Davis said, “This will be huge if we win the match up against OCC. My goal was to either place first or second, but a win would put us in third place.”
However, a win was not in the cards for the Gauchos. “They are freshman and they are still learning,” said Davis. “Their youth hurt them today.”
Saddleback number one Emman Latifi was victorious in his match winning 6-2,6-2.
“I played probably the best tennis I have played all season.”, said Latifi afterwards.
The loss drops Saddleback’s record to 7-5 overall and 3-4 in Orange Empire Conference competition. Orange Coast College improves to 9-5 overall and 6-2 in conference play. The Pirates currently sit in second place behind first place and undefeated Cypress College.
The Gauchos will return to action on Thursday, March 31 at 2 p.m. when they travel to take on their interdistrict rival Irvine Valley College Lasers.