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Rio Mesa Levels Quartz Hill

Boys' tennis: Rebels had hopes of an upset before Spartans won five of first six matches in 16-2 victory.


OXNARD — On paper, it appeared Quartz Hill High had a chance against third-seeded Rio Mesa in a Southern Section Division II second-round boys' tennis match.

After all, Rio Mesa struggled to beat Hart, 10-8, in the first round two days earlier and Quartz Hill defeated Hart by the same score in a nonleague meeting.

But on the court, the Spartans (18-2) dashed Quartz Hill's upset hopes by winning five of six matches in the first rotation of round robin play en route to a 16-2 victory at Rio Mesa High.

Quinn Borchard (40-0), Rio Mesa's No. 1 player, swept his three singles sets, but his first set of the day was one of the toughest of his high school career.

In a battle between ranked juniors, Borchard dealt Jeff Kim of Quartz Hill his first loss of the season, 7-5.

"That first set was obviously a struggle but I managed to break his serve to close it out," said Borchard, ranked No. 7 in Southern California in the boys' 18s by the United States Tennis Assn.

"There were a lot of close games and I'm glad I was able to pull it out. But I don't think it necessarily set the tone for the rest of the match because our other players were winning, too."

Kim, however, said he needed to win for the Rebels to have a chance.

"The way our lineup was set up, I felt a lot of pressure to sweep for us to pull this out," said Kim, ranked No. 79 in Southern California in the boys' 18s.

"I had more break-point chances than he did, I just couldn't convert them. But we weren't playing conservative at all. He was serve-and-volleying and I was hitting some good passing shots."

Quartz Hill fell even further behind in the second round of singles play when Kim, unable to shake off his loss to Borchard, lost to the Spartans' No. 2 player, Davey Jones, 6-1.

"That first set was the first time I'd lost all year, then I had to play Davey [Jones] right away, with maybe two minutes rest," said Kim, who is headed for the Air Force Academy.

"He's a grinder and I just had nothing left."

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