A multi-sport standout at Ceres High, Shania Evans accomplished a first in her athletic career by advancing to the finals of the Western Athletic Conference Varsity Girls Tennis Singles Championships.
“I’m proud of myself,” said Evans, a fourth-year player with the Bulldogs.
Seeded second, Evans compiled a 3-1 record en route to a runner-up finish at the WAC Finals last week in Modesto.
Evans lost 6-4, 6-1 to top-seeded Kierstyn Cotta of Los Banos in the finals on Thursday at Beyer High School.
“I’m super happy,” Shania said. “I competed with her. I was expected to lose 6-0, 6-0.”
Cotta routed Evans 6-2, 6-0 earlier this season.
“She blew me out of the water,” Shania said. “I didn’t have a chance. This time, I was a lot better prepared. I was more relaxed playing her. I was moving her around the court. I had no pressure on me. I had nothing to lose.”
Evans bested Mountain House’s Elyse Low (4-6, 6-4, 6-2) in the semifinals, Pacheco’s Xitlaly Gomez 6-3, 6-1 in the quarterfinals and Lathrop’s Darlene Hoang 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 in the first round.
Evans topped Low and Hoang despite dropping the opening set during both matches.
“I excel in the hardest situations,” she said.
Evans compiled a 15-2 record against conference opponents this fall.
She won 12 of 13 matches during the WAC regular season.
Cotta dealt Evans both of her losses.
“I’m super happy,” Shania said. “I never thought I’d be a top singles player. I thought I’d be in the doubles range.”
Ceres High senior Vivian Moreno lost, 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-1), to fourth-seeded Gianna Miller of Beyer in the first round of the WAC singles tournament.
Moreno and Miller battled for three hours.
“Both girls played well,” Bulldogs’ head coach Brandon Moring said. “It was a really good match. Vivian tried her hardest. She just lost some of the key points.”
Moreno posted an 11-4 record during the WAC campaign.
“I’m really proud of her,” Moring said.