YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


Top of Line Imports

Tennis: German exchange students Deden at Nordhoff and Holl at Antelope Valley are No. 1 on their teams.


They are exchange students who wouldn't exchange their experiences for anything.

Karin Deden is a 16-year-old junior from Krefeld, Germany, who plays No. 1 singles for the Nordhoff High girls' tennis team.

Eva Holl is a 15-year-old sophomore from Koblenz, Germany, who is the top singles player for Antelope Valley.

They don't know each other, but they share more than a common homeland and the top positions on their respective teams.

They both are thoroughly enjoying their time in the U.S.

"Everything's new and it's like a little adventure for me," said Deden, who has a 20-13 record in sets.

Deden and Holl have full schedules that include school, tennis and extra-curricular activities.

An accomplished musician who plays the piano and the cornet, Deden is a member of Nordhoff's symphonic wind band.

Holl plans to play basketball for Antelope Valley, and might swim for the Antelopes in the spring.

"She just wants to do everything she can while she's here," said Kristi Speir, girls' tennis coach at Antelope Valley.

Balancing her schedule has been difficult for Holl, who recently began working out with the Antelope Valley girls' basketball team. Language can also occasionally become a barrier.

"I wish I could communicate with her the way I can with the other players," said La-Nay Batchelor, Antelope Valley's captain and No. 2 player. "I don't understand everything she says, and I feel bad about that. . . . I want to have some kind of a bond with everyone on the team."

The team suffered when Holl missed the Golden League opener against Quartz Hill because she didn't know there was a match.

"I just went home," Holl said. "I was very sorry. But when the coach says things sometimes, I have to really listen. And sometimes I don't and I miss things."

Mostly, Holl misses her family. She is in a yearlong exchange program for 15- to 18-year-olds.

"In the beginning, it was really difficult," she said. "But it gets easier every day. The people are very friendly, and I feel more and more comfortable now."

Placed with an Ojai family that has been host to four previous foreign students, Deden has been comfortable at Nordhoff from the start.

Her tennis teammates made sure of that.

"The other players introduced me to everybody," Deden said. "They took me everywhere and showed me around. Flying here was the hardest part of the whole experience. You didn't know what was coming."

Deden isn't looking forward to leaving when her semester at Nordhoff ends.

"It's only half a year, and the time is going so fast," she said. "The friends I've made, I'm sure I'm going to miss."


Hart High waited a long time to win a Foothill League girls' title.

The wait to repeat was much shorter.

Hart clinched its second consecutive Foothill championship with its second undefeated league season in a row by defeating Burroughs, 12-5, last week.

Hart (13-2, 10-0 in league play) hadn't won a Foothill League title since 1988 before winning last year.

The Indians accomplished the repeat with the return of seven of its top nine players from a team that went 16-1 in 1997.

"I think the kids wanted another championship with all the seniors who were coming back," said Coach Steve Love, who is in his 23rd season as the Indians' coach.

Jenny Munroe, Hart's top singles player, and the doubles team of seniors Penny Letts and Catherine Pucci have 25-0 records.

Hart had plenty of momentum entering the league playoffs, which started Wednesday at Cal State Northridge.

Munroe, runner-up to Shaland Romero of Burroughs in the Foothill singles tournament last season, is the favorite to win this time.

Georgette Wright of Burbank and Dragana Ognenovska of Burroughs are expected to be her top challengers. Wright has defeated everyone in the league except Munroe.

Letts and Pucci finished fourth in the league finals last year.


Munroe defeated Diana Friedland of Van Nuys in the girls' 16 division of the 19th annual K-Swiss Southern California Tennis Assn. Grand Prix Masters tournament Sunday at the Neal Machander Tennis Center in Santa Ana.

Munroe, ranked 31st in the SCTA rankings, prevailed, 6-1, 6-2, over Friedland, who is No. 64.

Breanne Henkelman of St. Bonaventure, 80th in SCTA rankings, took third place by default over Kelly Duncan of San Diego in the girls' 16 division.

Samantha Hammond of La Reina, ranked 40th in girls' 14s, defeated Jennifer Dao of Claremont, 6-1, 6-2, to claim third place in that division.

Amber Harper of Tarzana, ranked 12th in girls' 12s by the SCTA, beat Alex Jurewitz of Palos Verdes Estates, 6-1, 6-1, in the final of that division.

Jesse Ferlianto of Canyon Country defeated James Magsino of El Camino Real, 3-6, 6-1, 6-2, in the final of the boys' 16s. Ferlianto is ranked 60th and Magsino 88th.

Los Angeles Times Articles