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Mater Dei Girls Love the Show in Las Vegas

October 08, 2003|Lauren Peterson; Eric Sondheimer; John Ortega | From Staff Reports

The Santa Ana Mater Dei girls' tennis team proved to be a good bet in Las Vegas last weekend.

The Monarchs (7-0), ranked No. 8 in the Southland by The Times, put their perfect record up against Bishop Gorman (9-1) and Las Vegas Bonanza (10-1) and beat both, 10-0 and 15-1.

Seniors Carolina Velasco and Michelle Van Oppen won singles matches and teamed up to win doubles matches against each opponent, and seniors Genevieve Devaney and Carolyn Plou won doubles matches with different partners against each team. Michelle Murphy and Leslie Bullock, both freshmen, also won singles and doubles matches against each team.

But the interstate, round-robin competition was only part of a novel, four-day team-building exercise that began Thursday and ended with a return trip to a family Mass and continental breakfast at Mater Dei on Sunday morning.

"Tennis was an aside. Vegas was a show. The whole thing was a show," Coach Richard Berman said. "It was unbelievable, the best trip I've ever been on."

-- Lauren Peterson

Marcel Jones, a 6-foot-7 forward from Santa Ana Mater Dei, has committed to Oregon State. ... Ian Bell, a senior running back at Woodland Hills Taft, has committed to Washington State.

-- Eric Sondheimer

Junior April Phillips, a member of Harbor City Narbonne's City Section champion girls' basketball team last season and the reigning City champion in the shotput, has transferred to Long Beach Poly.

Phillips placed sixth in the state in the shotput at 44 feet 3 1/4 inches.

She will join a Poly track team that won the state title in June and will include Shalonda Solomon, the Pan-American Junior (age 19 and under) champion in the 100 and 200 meters, and Jasmine Lee, the defending state champion in the 400.

-- John Ortega

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