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The Times' Rankings

March 12, 2003|Lauren Peterson

A look at the top 10 boys' tennis teams in the Southland:

Division V semifinalists last season, Sea Kings return Southern Section doubles champions Garrett Snyder and Carsten Ball, who will play singles this year.

*--* 1. CORONA DEL MAR, SS-DIV. I

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*--* 2. TROY, SS-DIV. II

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Jeffrey Das is back for last season's Division II runner-up. Loaded with talent, depth and experience, Troy should be favored to win this year's title.

*--* 3. PALM DESERT, SS-DIV. II

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There's only one senior on the team, but 10 players have USTA age-group rankings. Last season's Division IV champion has a 21-match winning streak.

*--* 4. SANTA BARBARA, SS-DIV. I

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Channel League champions 36 of the last 37 years, the Dons could run away with that banner -- and maybe the Division I title, too, with one of the area's strongest lineups.

*--* 5. MATER DEI, SS-DIV. I

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Junior Kaes Van't Hof, the son of Lindsay Davenport's ex-coach, tops a lineup that remains intact after reaching the Division III quarterfinals last year.

*--* 6. BRENTWOOD, SS-DIV. IV

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No. 1 player Eric McKean is recovering from a strained back, but once he does, last year's Division V runner-up may be deeper than last season.

*--* 7. PENINSULA, SS-DIV. I

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Last year's Division I runner-up has a different look at the top without Rylan Rizza, but opponents still must reckon with Trevor Dobson.

*--* 8. HARVARD-WESTLAKE, SS-DIV. I

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Wolverines won Division V title last season, lost Jesse Ferlianto to graduation and now will make the jump to Division I with a group of good, if not great, players.

*--* 9. EL CAMINO REAL, CITY

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Three-time defending City Section champion returns six key players, including the Aiken brothers, and add freshman Chad Gerber.

*--* 10. CALABASAS, SS-DIV. I

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Strong singles led by sophomore Gary Sacks, the 2001 USTA boys' 14 Super National Hardcourt champion, who was a Southern Section quarterfinalist last season.

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